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WASHINGTON (AP) - Defense stocks on Wednesday hit new highs as Defense Secretary Robert Gates requested an extra $42 billion in funding from Congress to cover military costs in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2008.
The AMEX Defense Index, which tracks 14 major defense company stocks, rose 14.25 to a high of 1,686.72 in afternoon trading. Since last year, the index has risen roughly 47 percent, outperforming the broader S&P 500 index, which has climbed nearly 15 percent over the same period.