BETHESDA, Md. (AP) _ The president and chief operating officer of Lockheed Martin Corp. has resigned after six months on the job, the company said Thursday.

Louis R. Hughes, who cited personal reasons for his decision, will be replaced by Robert J. Stevens, the defense contractor's executive vice president and chief financial officer.

Stevens has been with Lockheed since October 1999. He formerly headed General Motor's international operations, and will continue as CFO until a replacement is named.

Lockheed's third-quarter earnings are due out next week. It has spent much of last year in a slump, with a depressed stock price and the failure of several high-profile missile and rocket systems.

Lockheed Martin shares closed Thursday up 27 cents at $32.51.

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