Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Lockheed Says Cutting F-22 Would Cost Jobs

Bethesda-based Lockheed Martin, the prime contractor for the F-22 fighter jet, said thousands of jobs would be lost if President Obama decides not to continue funding for the advanced but costly plane. Larry Lawson, Lockheed's general manager of the F-22 program, said the program is responsible for about 95,000 jobs at 1,000 suppliers.

Obama must decide by March 1 whether to spend $523 million on 20 more of the radar-evading planes beyond the 183 already planned. Pentagon leaders, including Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, have expressed doubt that more F-22s are needed, especially since the military plans to buy several thousand F-35s, a much cheaper plane.

Northrop Swings to Huge Loss

Northrop Grumman, one of the Washington region's largest private sector employers, said it swung to a loss of $2.54 billion in the fourth quarter from a profit of $457 million in the year-ago period.

The Los Angeles-based defense contractor's results included a $3.06 billion charge to write down the value of acquisitions in its shipbuilding and space operations. The expected write-down stemmed from shipbuilder Litton Industries and manufacturer TRW, companies that Northrop Grumman bought earlier in the decade.

Before the charge, the maker of military aircraft, ships and electronics earned $524 million, slightly above analysts' average forecast of $1.55 per share. Revenue rose 4 percent to $9.15 billion, led by stronger sales in electronics.

For the year, the company lost $1.28 billion, compared with a 2007 profit of $1.81 billion. Revenue rose 6.5 percent to $34 billion.


Massey Energy, the fourth-largest U.S. coal producer, said fourth-quarter profit rose tenfold as it sold the fuel at higher prices. Net income climbed to $53.6 million, or 63 cents a share, from $5.1 million, or 6 cents, a year earlier, Richmond-based Massey said.

Compiled from reports by Washington Post staff writers, the Associated Press and Bloomberg News.

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