The scenes from Ukraine are heart-rending — civilians killed by Russian bombs, families taking shelter in subway stations, one million refugees on the move, and more. But there’s one group that stands to benefit handsomely from the conflict, no matter how it plays out from here: American weapons contractors.
The Wall Street Journal summed up the arms industry’s bright new prospects in a Mar. 1 headline: “Ukraine Crisis Stokes Defense Industry Shares.” The article notes that Lockheed Martin shares have hit an all-time high. Meanwhile, BAE Systems, Europe’s largest defense contractor, saw its stock value rise 25% in the wake of promises by Germany and other European states to sharply increase their military budgets.
There are billions to be made on a new military buildup in Europe, from the recent offer of $6 billion worth of General Dynamics M-1 tanks to Poland to reports that Germany may consider purchasing Lockheed Martin’s F-35 combat aircraft. And this is on top of the costs of sending large shipments of anti-tank and anti-aircraft systems to Ukraine. But the value of contracts tied to the current crisis in Ukraine may be small change when compared with an even larger potential boon for the industry — locking in big increases in the Pentagon’s already massive budget for years to come.
Read the full article in Inkstick.