This week was a big one for investors in America's defense industry, as leading defense contractors Textron (NYSE:TXT) , Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC), and General Dynamics (NYSE:GD) all reported strong earnings for their most recent quarters.

One and all, investors rewarded these earnings "beats" with powerful surges in share prices. But while the stock market results were uniformly outstanding, we see big differences in the numbers that Textron, Northrop, and General Dynamics actually produced. In particular, one of these companies handily outperformed the others -- and is poised to keep on outperforming.

Which of these three suddenly popular companies has the staying power to keep producing profits, and happy shareholders, in the quarters to come? You owe it to yourself to find out. And in the short slideshow below, we'll tell you. Take a quick look now and make sure to tune back in at the end for our special free report.

Textron, Northrop Grumman, and General Dynamics report, from The Motley Fool.

Rich Smith has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.