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Lockheed Wins $334 Million F-35 Contract Before U.S. Cuts

Lockheed Martin Corp. received a $333.7 million U.S. downpayment to buy initial parts, components and materials for an eighth batch of F-35 jets, as the Pentagon locked in the funds hours before automatic budget cuts begin.

Yesterday’s action exempts the funds from the across-the-board spending reductions known as sequestration that take effect today because Pentagon officials have said contracts with obligated dollars won’t be cut or terminated. The eighth contract calls for 35 jets, including four aircraft for the U.K. and two for Norway, according to a Pentagon statement.