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Lockheed Martin Corporation (LMT - Analyst Report) was awarded a sole-source-cost-plus-incentive-fee/cost-plus-award-fee contract modification. The value of this contract modification is $30,226,670, increasing the total contract value from $1,286,203,768 to $1,316,430,438. Under this modification, the contractor will conduct the installation, test, and checkout of the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense Baseline 4.0.1 Weapon System aboard three Navy Destroyers. The work will be performed in Moorestown, New Jersey; Pearl Harbor, Hawaii; San Diego, California, and Norfolk, Virginia.  The performance period is from the date of award through March 15, 2015.  The Missile Defense Agency, Dahlgren, Virginia, is the contracting activity.

The Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System program is managed by the U.S. Department of Defense Missile Defense Agency. The program focuses on providing defense against ballistic missiles. It is part of the U.S. national missile defense strategy.

Lockheed Martin is the largest U.S. defense contractor with a platform-centric focus and a steady inflow of follow-on orders due to its leveraged presence in the Army, Air Force, Navy and IT programs. However, the ongoing trend of governmental delays in program decisions and even program cancellations have affected the fortunes of the defense industry in general and Lockheed Martin in particular.

Lockheed Martin finished 2012 with $82.3 billion of order backlog, including $19.8 billion of new orders booked in the fourth quarter. Of this $30.1 billion belonged to the Aeronautics segment and $18.1 billion to the Space Systems segment. The rest is made up of $14.7 billion for the Missiles and Fire Control segment; $10.7 billion for Mission Systems and Training; and $8.7 billion for the Information Systems & Global Solutions.

Lockheed Martin is a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock. The past 30 days have seen 10 of the 11 earnings estimates for full year 2013 moving up despite an industry-wide threat of budget cutbacks and effects of sequestration.

In the aerospace and defense industry we presently prefer the Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks, Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. (HII - Snapshot Report) and European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company , as well as the Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock FLIR Systems, Inc. (FLIR - Analyst Report).

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