Sales for the world's 100 largest arms producers amounted to $411 billion in 2010, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. That was up 1% from the year before, a modest rise that was held in check by the drawdown of foreign forces in Iraq.
Military budgets have been largely unaffected by the economic downturn, said Susan Jackson of SIPRI, a peace research group.
Since 2002, arms sales among the 100 largest providers of military equipment and services have increased 60%, SIPRI said in a release last month.
The 10 biggest arms producers accounted for more than half of the 2010 sales. The composition of those sales reflects the state of modern warfare, as battles are now often fought with remote surveillance and air strikes instead of ground combat.
Of the 100 companies on the list, 44 are based in the United States. Sales by the U.S. companies accounted for more than 60% of arms sales revenue in 2010.
The top seven U.S. arms producers are also among Uncle Sam's 10 biggest contractors.