SARASOTA, Fla. (AP) ¿ Roper Industries Inc., which makes engineered products, said Monday its third-quarter profit fell 24 percent as a drop in sales offset lower costs.

Net income slid to $56.4 million, or 61 cents per share, compared with $74 million, or 79 cents per share, in the year-earlier period.

Excluding one-time items the company earned 63 cents per share.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected, on average, earnings per share of 64 cents per share. Such expectations typically exclude one-time items.

Sales fell to $485.7 million from $593.1 million. Analysts expected $513.5 million.

Selling, administrative and general expenses declined to $153.6 million from $176.5 million.

Although the year-over-year results declined, the third-quarter was stronger than the previous period.

"More than half our businesses experienced greater than 10 percent growth in orders over the second quarter, and this improvement in order momentum is expected to continue in the fourth quarter," said CEO Brian Jellison.

Roper also issued full-year 2009 earnings-per-share earnings guidance within range of Wall Street expectations.

Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.