Boeing reported earnings of $1.12 a share on profits of $837 million. "Our results and revised outlook reflect the continued strong performance of our commercial production and services programs and the ability of our defense businesses to produce solid results in a challenging environment," said Jim McNerney, Boeing chairman, president and CEO.

Meanwhile, Lockheed announced that its third-quarter profit dropped 28 percent, to $571 million, or $1.57 a share, compared with $797 million, or $2.07 a share in the period a year earlier. Earnings from continuing operations were $565 million, or $1.55 a share, compared with $786 million, or $2.04 a share. Sales rose 6 percent, to $11.38 billion, from $10.77 billion. The drop in quarterly profit was partly a result of a $178 million charge for a buyout program for 600 executives. The company said the reduction in its forecast for 2010 earnings also reflected plans to divest units and add more money to its pension funds.

In related news, Hawker Beechcraft distributed 60-day layoff notices to 350 salaried employees earlier this month and confirmed a timeline by which it will eliminate about 800 union jobs. According to the company, the work will be transferred to third-party suppliers and the Hawker Beechcraft’s plants in Mexico.

"These decisions and actions are intended to sustain and improve the company's financial strength and improve competitive capability during a very difficult time for the business aviation industry," said Hawkder Beecher CEO Bill Boisture.

Hawker Beechcraft employs about 6,000 people in Wichita.

Source: The New York Times, CNBC, and the Wichita Eagle.