BAE Systems has reported a sharp fall in profits after revealing the impact of further defence spending cuts in the United States.

The defence giant, which has bases in Samlesbury and Warton, reported a decline in profits by more than 60 per cent over the last year.

The company, which employs more than 88,000 people worldwide, is also braced for another decline in earnings this year but said an order backlog worth £42.7 billion meant it was well placed in the medium term.

Pre-tax profits for last year fell to £422 million from £1.2 billion a year earlier, a decline of 65 per cent. But the company revealed that sales were 2 per cent higher at £18.2 billion.

Shares in BAE have fallen by more than 10 per cent following the announcement which offset the newly-agreed price terms with Saudi Arabia over the sale of 72 Eurofighter Typhoon jets.

A spokesman for the company said it was not considering job cuts at Samlesbury or Warton.

Chief executive Ian King said: “Overall, the group delivered a solid performance in 2013. A proactive focus on costs and enhanced competitiveness protected our margins across the majority of the business.