President Trump and congressional leaders reached an agreement that will keep the U.S. government operating at FY17 funding levels through mid-December. The continuing resolution (CR), part of a broader legislative package that also included a three-month increase to the debt ceiling and nearly $8 billion in hurricane relief funding, was signed into law on September 8. Republicans had been pushing for a longer extension to the debt ceiling, but the agreement sets up critical votes on both the budget and the debt ceiling in December. Continue reading
As defense markets continue to adapt to dynamic economic and political forces, the major players continue to hold their entrenched positions.
Regional turmoil in parts of the Middle East, Europe and Asia continue to drive the need for more spending. Further, international sales for many firms are set to expand, driven by fear over the Islamic State (also known as ISIS), a more bellicose Russia, and regional pressures from China and North Korea. Continue reading
President Donald Trump’s Fiscal Year 18 federal budget proposal – released on May 23 – includes a few surprises for NASA. While much has been made of the many cuts to social programs in the president’s budget, NASA’s funding remains largely unchanged – with a few notable exceptions. Continue reading
The Pentagon’s FY17 budget was signed into law on May 5, more than halfway through the fiscal year. The legislation couldn’t come soon enough, as the military has been operating under a series of three continuing resolutions that funded the department at FY16 levels. CRs bring with them a host of difficulties, including restrictions on launching new programs, and leave many existing programs overfunded or unfunded. The Pentagon has become quite adept at navigating CRs, which have sadly become the norm in Washington. However, this year’s scenario was particularly troubling, as CRs in recent years haven’t lasted more than a few months. Continue reading
by William Ostrove and Shaun McDougall, Forecast International Military Market Analysts
Recent reports in the Argentine press indicate that the country has plans to purchase over $2 billion worth of military equipment over the next few years. In a letter leaked to El Destape, Argentine ambassador to the U.S., Martin Lousteau, listed equipment needed by the Argentine Army and Air Force to conduct peacekeeping missions, combat terrorism, and counter illegal trafficking. The list, which would be the envy of even the best-equipped militaries, included F-16 fighter jets, Stryker armored vehicles, air surveillance radar systems, AH-1 Cobra Helicopters, UH-60 and CH-47 transport helicopters, and anti-tank weaponry. Continue reading
Early on April 7, 2017, the United States Navy conducted Tomahawk missile strikes on al-Shayrat airbase in Homs, Syria, in retaliation for an alleged chemical weapons attack earlier in the week on Khan Sheikhoun, in opposition-controlled Idlib. The strikes mark the first time the United States has deliberately targeted the Syrian military since an uprising began in 2011. Continue reading
Forecast International’s Platinum Forecast System 3.1 indicates that a total of 6,175 medium/heavy military rotorcraft will be produced during the 15-year period from 2017 through 2031. The value of this production is estimated at $158.4 billion (in FY17 dollars). We define a medium/heavy military rotorcraft as one having a gross weight of at least 6,804 kilograms (15,000 lb). Continue reading
America’s political landscape experienced a tectonic shift with the November 8, 2016 election of Donald Trump as President of the United States. Add to that phenomenon the Republican capture of a monopoly in the legislative branch. The result is a configuration of power in Washington that will play a serious role in shaping the U.S. defense budget as well as the overall defense market. Continue reading
The White House has issued initial budget guidance to federal agencies for the 2018 fiscal year, calling for an increase in defense spending that will be offset by an equal reduction for non-defense discretionary programs. The plan calls for $603 billion in defense spending in FY18, reflecting an increase of $54 billion, or nearly 10 percent, over the current $549 billion Budget Control Act (BCA) cap. The topline figure applies to budget function 050, which covers the Department of Defense, defense programs within the Department of Energy, and defense-related programs in other agencies. The Pentagon’s base budget accounts for 95 to 96 percent of function 050 spending each year, with the exact amount varying with each budget. Continue reading
U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis released a memo on January 31 providing initial guidance for strengthening the armed forces through an FY17 budget amendment, the FY18 budget request, and the FY19-FY23 Future Years Defense Program. The memo is a direct response to a memorandum on rebuilding the U.S. armed forces, released by the president on January 27. Mattis outlines a three-phase approach: improve warfighter readiness; achieve program balance by addressing pressing shortfalls; and build a larger, more capable, and more lethal joint force. Those objectives are centered around the completion of the FY17 budget process, and the release of the next two budget requests.