New threats may keep defense bull market going

Lockheed Martin F-35 fighter jet.
Roslan Rahman | AFP | Getty Images
Lockheed Martin F-35 fighter jet.

Defense stocks are sitting near all-time highs and investors are asking, is it too late to get in?

Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and Northrop Grumman have made the most convincing moves higher, but even Boeing and General Dynamics, with large exposure to commercial aviation, have fared well lately.

One look at the front page of any newspaper and it's easy to see why the defense rally has legs. Syria, ISIS, North Korea and cyberwarfare all point to a secular tail wind for the industry that isn't likely to end soon.

Source: Bloomberg

Six years ago when the current administration ushered in an era of reduced military budgets investors feared the worst. Trailing five-year and one-year performance charts tell a different story. Northrop has been the clear winner, up 214 percent since 2010 with Lockheed close behind.

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