Lockheed Martin’s fourth-quarter profit rose almost 10% last year, fuelled by strong sales, the company says.

Lockheed earned US$799m in the fourth quarter, up from US$729m in 2006. Sales of satellites and ballistic missiles rose US6.5%, to US$2.1bn, while electronic systems sales rose US2.9% to US$2.8bn.

“Our programme execution was solid, we won important new business, and we continued to shape a balanced business portfolio – all while achieving outstanding financial performance,” Lockheed chief executive Robert Stevens says.

For 2007, Lockheed posted a profit of US$3bn, compared with US$2.5bn in 2006.

Sales for the year were up 5.6%, to US$41.9bn.