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5 Aerospace & Defense Stocks Ready for Liftoff

aerospace industry, the industrials sector has demonstrated significant outperformance, surging by over 7% compared to the benchmark SPY ETF, which has seen a more modest increase of just over 5.6%. 

Stocks in the aerospace and defense industries have notably amplified this trend, with numerous industry leaders achieving double-digit gains year-to-date. This remarkable sector performance and exceptional industry outperformance can be attributed to escalating economic and political uncertainties. Primarily, these uncertainties stem from dwindling probabilities of multiple rate hikes by the Federal Reserve this year and the sustained and escalating tensions in the Middle East, compounded by the ongoing conflict in Ukraine and the resultant rise in gas prices.

Against this backdrop of heightened volatility and outperformance thus far in the year, several aerospace and defense stocks are showing promising signs of a breakout. Here are five stocks within the industry that appear primed to sustain their upward momentum.

5 Aerospace & Defense Stocks Ready for Liftoff

Lockheed Martin Corp. 

[content-module:CompanyOverview|NYSE:LMT]Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT), while not exhibiting year-to-date sector or market outperformance, is currently consolidating above rising Simple Moving Averages (SMAs), positioned just under 3% below its 52-week high, signaling a potential breakout. With anticipated earnings growth of 8.03%, robust dividend growth, and a projected upside of over 4% based on consensus price targets, investor interest remains high. The company recently reported earnings on April 23, surpassing expectations on both revenue and EPS, further bolstering investor confidence in its performance trajectory.

Axon Enterprise Inc.

[content-module:CompanyOverview|NASDAQ:AXON]Axon Enterprise (NASDAQ: AXON), a prominent law enforcement technology solutions provider, is a growth stock with projected earnings growth of 34.43% for the entire year. The stock has a moderate buy rating alongside positive overall sentiment and has notably outperformed its peers and the overall market year-to-date, boasting gains of over 21%. Currently consolidating just 5% below its all-time high, the stock exhibits substantial upward momentum on a higher timeframe, indicating strong potential for further growth.

General Dynamics Corp.

[content-module:CompanyOverview|NYSE:GD]Like the previously mentioned companies, General Dynamics (NYSE: GD) benefits from a bullish uptrend on a higher timeframe, positioned just 2% shy of its 52-week high. The company recently reported earnings, demonstrating year-to-date outperformance with gains exceeding 11%, delivering EPS in line with expectations and revenue that surpassed estimates. With a moderate buy rating based on fourteen analyst ratings and a consensus price target indicating over 3% upside potential, investor sentiment remains favorable toward GD's growth potential.

Raytheon Technologies Corp.

[content-module:CompanyOverview|NYSE:RTX]Raytheon Technologies Corporation (NYSE: RTX), a multinational aerospace and defense company serving commercial, military, and government clients worldwide, has demonstrated significant outperformance this year, with YTD gains of 21.59%. Noteworthy is the stock's consolidation above rising Simple Moving Averages (SMAs), approaching a multi-year level of resistance. A breakout above $104 would mark a substantial upward movement for the stock and a potential momentum shift. 

In its recent earnings report on April 23, the company reported EPS of $1.34 for the quarter, surpassing analysts' consensus estimates by $0.11. Additionally, the company generated $19.30 billion in revenue for the quarter, exceeding the consensus estimate of $18.44 billion, indicating a 12.1% year-over-year increase in revenue.

Howmet Aerospace Inc.

[content-module:CompanyOverview|NYSE:HWM] Although smaller in market capitalization compared to the stocks above, Howmet Aerospace (NYSE: HWM) is a top-rated company providing advanced engineered solutions for the aerospace and transportation industries globally. With a moderate buy rating supported by fourteen analyst ratings and projected earnings growth of 22% for the entire year, HWM is a top-rated stock. 

The stock has surged by 24% year-to-date, surpassing sector and market performance. Like the above stocks, HWM is consolidating within a bullish formation near its all-time high, with a potential breakout above $68 poised to catalyze a move toward new heights.

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