The previous low was $12.1 billion in contracts awarded in January 2013, which may have cause a few defense contractors to dispute T.S. Eliot’s proclamation that April was the cruelest month.
Contributing to the January decline: The Pentagon often pushes out more agreements in December, the end of its first quarter; ongoing defense budget reductions and the temporary spending bill, enacted to end October’s 16-day partial government shutdown, that limited contracting.
The Defense Department is required to announce contracts of at least $6.5 million.
“This is a slow time of the contracting year,” said Larry Allen, president of Allen Federal Business Partners, based in McLean, Virginia. “Warmer weather will bring more spending.”