Lower interest payments and currency effects helped apparel company Levi Strauss & Co to a third quarter net profit of US$69m, up 14% on last year.

Net revenues at the US company were up 6% to $1.11bn, but sales in its home market edged up only 1% on last year.

Revenues in Europe surged 16%, but were up only 3% at constant currency rates, while Asia Pacific sales were up 6% - or 3% at constant rates.

Gross profit was up 9.5% to $532m, while operating profit edged up fractionally to $144m from $143m last year.

Levi Strauss said the surge in net profit was primarily because of lower interest expense.

"I am pleased with our solid third quarter performance," said John Anderson, Levi Strauss president and CEO.

"All three of our regions grew, demonstrating that our global strategies are working, even in the face of difficult economic conditions around the world.

"Looking at the balance of the year, we are very mindful that economic conditions are deteriorating in many of our key markets around the world. In this challenging environment, we are continuing to invest in the business."