While it looked as if Egypt's rebellion would be the model for all future uprisings, Libya hasn't fit that mold. The uprising in Libya -- aided now by military help from France, the U.K., and the U.S. -- holds all the possibilities of being a prolonged battle. Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi has no intention of stepping down, and international forces have no intention of ousting him, at least for the time being.
The potential for a long conflict has far-reaching implications on both local and international companies -- some good, some bad. Although the real losers here are the people of Libya, I thought it'd be worthwhile to look at some widely held companies that could be on the list of potential winners or losers from this conflict.
Most defense companies are the obvious winners of U.S. involvement in Libya. Raytheon
But not everything is going to be a slam-dunk benefit for the defense sector. Just two days ago we were told of a fighter jet going down in Libya, requiring the rescue of two American pilots. This fighter jet, and the subsequent rescue helicopter, are both built by Boeing's
The outlook for the energy sector looks mixed at best. Russia's Gazprom (OTC BB: OGZPY.PK) looks to be the biggest beneficiary. When Libyan oil and gas output fell, Gazprom was there to pick up the slack in supplying Europe. Gazprom looks as if it will also benefit from reduced oil output in Japan and become a major supplier to that region in the coming years.
On the other side of the coin, Italian oil giant Eni
We're a long way off from knowing what the real economic implications of this uprising will be. This should, however, serve as a starting point for further research into these and related companies.
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Fool contributor Sean Williams does not own shares of any companies mentioned in this article. He would like to remind you not to forget about our friends in Japan who could use a helping hand. You can follow him on CAPS under the screen name TMFUltraLong. The Fool owns shares of Northrop Grumman and Raytheon. 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 that is conflict-free.