AMERICAN President Companies (APC) has reported a profit of US$30 million for the third quarter to September 22. This represents an increase of 33 per cent over the $22.5 million recorded in the third quarter of last year. Pre-tax profit for the parent of American President Lines (APL) was $49.8 million, up from $34 million. Pre-tax income included a gain of $3.6 million from the sale of a vessel and $3.5 million in liquidated damages resulting from the delayed delivery of two of the firm's new containerships. Revenues for the quarter amounted to $711 million, up from $672 million. Net profit for the first nine months was $46.2 million, compared with $51.7 million a year ago. Excluding one-time items, pre-tax profit for the first nine months rose 13 per cent to $67.4 million from $59.6 million. Revenues for the first nine months increased five per cent to $2.1 billion from $2 billion. Chairman John Lillie said APC gained from a 13 per cent volume growth and a seven per cent increase in average revenue per 40-foot equivalent unit (feu) in its exports to the United States, compared with last year's third-quarter results. The volume improvement was mainly because of a rise in commercial dry cargo shipped to South Korea, India and China. He attributed the gain in average revenue per feu to a modest general rate rise and improvements in the commodity mix. In the third quarter, APC also gained from an improvement in average revenue per feu in its intra-Asia business because of the general rate rises and a larger proportion of higher-rated refrigerated cargo. These gains were partially offset by a fall in APC's US import business compared with that a year ago. US import volumes declined 11 per cent because of increasing competition from non-conference carriers. But average revenue per feu improved in this market because of a general rate rise announced by the conference carriers (which include APL) earlier in the year, Mr Lillie said. North America stack train average revenue per feu declined five per cent during the third quarter, compared with last year's third-quarter results. This was attributable to increased competition from trucking firms and weakening of the intermodal market. Transportation operating expenses increased three per cent in the third quarter from a year earlier. Vessel expenses increased mainly because of the company's additional services in the Asia-Europe trade as well as the Asia-Panama-US east coast trade.