US-based military shipbuilding company Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) has reported a 33.8% drop in net earnings in the third quarter of 2021.

In the three-month period that ended on 30 September, the company’s net earnings were $147m. In the same quarter a year ago, the figure was $222m.

Diluted earnings per share in the quarter was $3.65, compared to $5.45 in the last year quarter.

HII’s operating income was $118m in Q3 2021, down 46.8% from $222m reported in Q3 2020. The operating margin also fell from 9.6% to 5% on a year-on-year basis.

The company attributed the fall to less favourable operating FAS/CAS adjustment.

However, the shipbuilder’s quarterly sales and service revenues remained stable and increased marginally to $2.34bn, compared to $2.31bn in the prior-year quarter.

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The total value of the new contracts secured in the third quarter was around $600m. The total order backlog stood at $50.1bn as of 30 September 2021.

In this quarter, HHI also completed its previously announced acquisition of Alion Science and Technology.

HII president and CEO Mike Petters said: “We are pleased with the third-quarter results that represent another quarter of consistent shipbuilding programme execution while we continue to navigate the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“During the quarter we closed the acquisition of Alion Science and Technology, and as we work to integrate it into our Technical Solutions division, we remain very excited about the significant growth avenues across the combined business that we believe will drive significant long-term value creation.”