LONDON, U.K. — Western defense companies have been riding high since Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine two years ago, and a proliferation of geopolitical threats is likely to keep the industry booming despite doubts about further US military aid for Kyiv.

Since February 23, 2022, the day before Moscow began bombing several Ukrainian cities, the stocks of five of the top US and European defense contractors have all risen. The companies — Europe’s BAE Systems, Thales and Rheinmetall, and Lockheed Martin (LMT) and Northrop Grumman (NOC) in the United States — have all either provided weapons for the battlefield in Ukraine or signed agreements to do so.

Governments have donated ammunition, tanks, and fighter jets to Ukraine, are replenishing their own depleted stockpiles, and have committed billions more to their defense budgets.

Canada and the European members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, which make up the bulk of NATO’s membership, spent 11% more on defense in 2023 than the previous year. That’s an “unprecedented rise,” according to NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg. The military alliance […]

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