ERNST E. ABEGG

ZURICH (AP) ¿ Swiss-based ABB Group, maker of power transmission and industrial automation equipment, saw third-quarter net profit rise 12 percent to over $1 billion, helped by a $380 million boost from reversing set-asides for taxes, antitrust fines and restructuring.

The company recorded a net profit of $927 million during the July-September period of 2008, it said Thursday. Revenue during the third quarter this year fell 10 percent to $7.91 billion, while orders dropped 21 percent to $7.06 billion.

Analysts at Zuercher Kantonalbank noted that without the boost ABB received from the release of provisions, results fell sharply below expectations.

Shares in ABB closed 2.4 percent lower at 19.96 Swiss francs ($19.61) on the Zurich exchange Thursday.

"Order trends were in line with what we saw in the second quarter, with steady demand in power and oil and gas but lower base orders in industrial markets," said ABB Chief Executive Joe Hogan.

"We'll continue to focus on making sure our costs are in line with market demand, but at the same time stay aggressively positioned to capture the significant growth opportunities in power infrastructure, renewables, energy efficiency and emerging markets," he said.

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