FELL IN THIRD QUARTERAfter-tax profits of U.S. manufacturers fell to a seasonally adjusted average of 2.6 percent of sales in the third quarter, the Commerce Department said Monday.
The figure compares with 3.1 percent in the second quarter and 2.8 percent in the first three months of the year. Commerce said the third-quarter figure compared with 4.2 percent for the same period in 1990. On a seasonally adjusted basis, manufacturers reported third-quarter after-tax profits of $18.239 billion, down from a revised $21.507 billion in the second quarter.
The profit decline was concentrated in durable goods.
Durable manufacturing registered $1.606 billion in unadjusted profits after revised second-quarter profits of $7.523 billion. That included large unadjusted losses in electrical machinery and transportation equipment of $1.278 billion and $1.625 billion, respectively.