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AOAV: all our reportsWho is arming Israel?

Who is arming Israel? Arms Manufacturer Profits Examined

AOAV’s report ‘Who is arming Israel?‘ is an in-depth analysis of the arms sold or provided to Israel by the UK, US, and other nations, focusing on the continuation and expansion of arms exports despite allegations of war crimes by the Israeli armed forces, highlighting the lack of transparency and the profits made in arms exports.

Arms manufacturers globally are reporting record profits amidst conflicts in Gaza and Ukraine. Companies like Lockheed Martin, RTX Raytheon, BAE Systems, and Rheinmetall are among those most benefiting.

  • BAE Systems and Raytheon saw significant share price increases post-October 7th, 2023
  • Executives from these companies have profited by selling shares since the Hamas attack, indicating a financial benefit from the conflict. 
  • Arms executive share sales in Q1 of 2024 dramatically increased compared to the previous years, suggesting a correlation with the ongoing conflict.

Against the backdrop of ongoing conflicts, such as Russia’s engagement in Ukraine and Israel’s operations in Gaza, major global arms manufacturers from the US, the UK, and Germany, including Lockheed Martin, RTX Raytheon, BAE Systems, General Dynamics, Northrop Grumman, L3Harris Technologies, and Rheinmetall, have all reported substantial profits or share price hikes. 

For instance, BAE Systems reported profits before interest and tax of £2.7 billion for 2023, on sales of £25.3 billion, a spike attributed to increased defence expenditures amid growing global instability. Lockheed Martin, meanwhile, noted an order backlog worth $160.6 billion in 2023, with sales up by 2% to $67.6 billion. 

The early part of 2024 saw a marked increase in the stock prices of these companies, particularly those arming the Israeli military, after October 7th. Notably, Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin, key suppliers to the Israeli Air Force, experienced significant share price increases following Hamas’ assault on Israel, with Northrop Grumman shares jumping by 11.43% and Lockheed Martin’s by nearly 9%. The trend of climbing stock prices persisted into 2024, with BAE Systems and Raytheon RTX seeing notable gains, exacerbated by Germany’s increased arms sales to Israel after October 7th, including a doubling of Rheinmetall’s share price. Additionally, the conflict’s aftermath has seen a significant boost in the personal wealth of these companies’ chief executives, as evidenced by a surge in insider share sales in the first quarter of 2024. 

This increase in executive stock sales, particularly at General Dynamics and L3Harris Technologies, suggests a direct correlation between the Gaza conflict and improved financial outcomes for these executives and their firms.

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For other parts of the report ‘Who is Arming Israel?‘ please see: