Back to top

Analyst Blog

Zacks Equity Research

Lockheed Gets $13M Navy Contract

NOC BA LMT

 ZacksTrade Now

This page is temporarily not available.  Please check later as it should be available shortly. If you have any questions, please email customer support at support@zacks.com or call 800-767-3771 ext.  9339.

Lockheed Martin Corporation (LMT - Analyst Report) was awarded a $13.3 million contract for fiscal 2012 Acoustic Rapid Commercial-Off-The-Shelf Insertion (A-RCI) TI-12 system upgrades.  The U.S. Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C., is the contracting authority.

The contract provides funding for the development and production of the A-RCI and common acoustics processing for the U.S. submarine fleet. Work on the contract will be performed in Manassas, Virginia (60%), and Clearwater, Florida (40%). Lockheed expects to finish work on the contract by January 2014. 

Lockheed Martin is the largest U.S. defense contractor with a platform-centric focus that guarantees a steady inflow of follow-on orders from a leveraged presence in the Army, Air Force, Navy and IT programs. We expect the company to benefit from a strong defense focus on a number of its platform programs, such as the C-130 Hercules & C-5 Galaxy transport aircraft, F-16 Fighting Falcon multi-role jet, MH-60 Helicopters, the Advanced Extremely High Frequency & the Global Positioning Satellite III system satellites, the Littoral Combat Ship, and the Aegis Weapons System.

Going forward, we believe Lockheed Martin has significant upside potential based on the Obama administration’s focus on Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance (ISR), unmanned systems, force protection, cyber-security and missile defense. It was already sitting on an order backlog of approximately $75.6 billion at the end of the first nine months of 2012.

Lockheed Martin has one of the strongest balance sheets among its peers with a stable long-term debt-to-capitalization of 78.0% after the end of the first nine months of 2012. Lockheed continues to be a strong cash generator with its operating cash flow reaching approximately $4.3 billion during fiscal 2011. Management is also prudent of returning a substantial portion of its free cash flow to shareholders through share repurchases and incremental dividends. The company closed the first nine months of 2012 with cash and cash equivalents of $4.7 billion, and a $1.5 billion revolving credit facility expiring in August 2016. Total long-term debt of approximately $6.4 billion was mainly in the form of fixed interest bearing securities (notes and debentures).

On the flip side, we must remember that a large percentage of Lockheed Martin’s business comes from the U.S. government (82% of sales in 2011). Budget deficits and political uncertainty make future defense budgets vulnerable to cutbacks. Going forward, Pentagon is seeking to trim about $487 billion in defense spending over 10 years to meet deficit reduction targets. Also, U.S. economic fundamentals are basically being kept on a tight leash as the Euro-crisis continues to cast its spell over financial markets, risking further cutbacks in future defense budgets.

We are apprehensive about the $15 trillion national debt and an unemployment rate of around 7.7% that would lead to the Budget Control Act’s dictum of automatic cutbacks across the board going forward. This would not result in anything extra for defense goliaths in general and Lockheed Martin in particular.

Given the budgetary cuts and overall scenario, it would not be too pessimistic to advise investors to adopt a wait-n-watch approach for the defense and aerospace major. Thus, considering the company’s business model and fundamentals, we maintain our long-term “Neutral” recommendation on the stock. The company holds a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) rating, which translates into a short-term Hold rating, and correlates with our long-term recommendation. This is in sync with its peers like The Boeing Company (BA - Analyst Report) and Northrop Grumman Corporation (NOC - Analyst Report).

Over the longer run, we expect the company to register a stable performance given its diversified presence in a plethora of defense platforms and IT know-how. Also, shareholder return will continue to be shored up by the company’s focus on debt repayment, its ongoing share repurchase program and the incremental dividend.

Please login to Zacks.com or register to post a comment.

New to Zacks?

Start Here

Zacks Investment Research

Close

Are you a new Zacks Member or a visitor to Zacks.com?

Top Zacks Features

Learn more

Start for as little as $4.50 per trade.

My Portfolio Tracker

Is it Time to Sell?

One of the most important steps you can take today is to set up your portfolio tracker on Zacks.com. Once you do, you'll be notified of major events affecting your stocks and/or funds with daily email alerts.

More Zacks Resources

Zacks Rank Home - Evaluate your stocks and use the Zacks Rank to eliminate the losers and keep the winners.

Mutual Fund Rank Home - Evaluate your funds with the Mutual Fund Rank for both your personal and retirement funds.

Stock/Mutual Fund Screening - Find better stocks and mutual funds. The ones most likely to beat the market and provide a positive return.

My Portfolio - Track your Portfolio and find out where your stocks/mutual funds stack up with the Zacks Rank.

Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers for Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers

Company Symbol Price %Chg
LAKE SHORE G LSG 0.77 +6.05%
QUESTCOR PHA QCOR 80.07 +2.47%
VIPSHOP HOLD VIPS 156.35 +1.82%
ENLINK MIDST ENLC 36.29 +1.60%
BNC BANCORP BNCN 17.33 +1.58%