U.S. President-elect Donald Trump heaped pressure on Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) on Thursday, saying he viewed costs for the aerospace company's F-35 fighter as too high and had asked Boeing Co (BA.N) to offer a price for a different aircraft. Trump's Twitter message came a day after the president-elect met with the chief executives of both aerospace companies, using the bully pulpit to press them on projects he says are too expensive. Lockheed shares fell 2 percent and Boeing's rose 0.7 percent in after-hours trading after Trump's tweet Thursday."Based on the tremendous cost and cost overruns of the Lockheed Martin F-35, I have asked Boeing to price-out a comparable F-18 Super Hornet!" Trump said.
While the F-35 program has been dogged by problems and costs have escalated to an estimated $379 billion, it is significantly newer than the F-18, which has fewer capabilities. On Wednesday, Trump met the two CEOs at his resort in Palm Beach, Florida, where he is spending Christmas.
Trump told reporters there that he wanted to keep the F-35 program's costs down. Separately, Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg said he guaranteed Trump that costs would not get out of control for a replacement to Air Force One, the presidential plane, another project Trump has complained is too costly.
(Repoting by Emily Stephenson; Additional reporting by Idrees Ali and Mohammad Zargham; Editing by Sandra Maler; Editing by Eric Beech)
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Updated Date: Dec 23, 2016 06:15:05 IST