Lockheed Martin, the world’s largest defense company, said first-quarter profit rose by 5.6 percent, aided by higher sales of its Patriot anti-missile interceptors.

Profit from continuing operations increased to $548 million from $519 million a year earlier. Based in Maryland, Lockheed has about 1,200 workers in Colorado Springs.

The results beat expectations. Full-year profit will increase about 25 cents from previous per-share estimates, because of a favorable U.S. tax settlement.

The good earnings news comes as defense companies face declines in U.S. defense spending beyond he $78 billion, five-year reduction proposed by the Departmetn of Defense. President Barack Obama announced $400 billion of additional cuts through 2023.