Maruti Suzuki India, hit by rising costs, adverse currency effects and a slight fall in sales, has reported falls in fiscal thirq quarter and nine-month profits.

In the April-December 2008 period, Maruti Suzuki booked total income from operations of INR144.2 trillion, a growth of 7.35% over same period last year. However, net profit after tax fell 31.9% to INR9.8bn.

In the third quarter, the company posted income from operations of INR46.3bn, a fall of 2.81%, compared to same period last year. Net profit for the quarter was INR2.13bn, down 54.27%.

“The reduction in net profit was due mainly to lower volumes, a rise in material costs and adverse impact of currency changes. In addition, a higher provision for depreciation, owing to more stringent depreciation standards adopted in March 2008, brought down net profit,” the company said in a statement.

Nine-month sales were down 1.26% year on year. The company said it sold 555,529 vehicles, including 44,870 exports.

Maruti said that a healthy growth in sales of A3 segment vehicles (52,700 units, up 42.81%) and the MUV segment (5,374 units, up 92.48%) helped results.

During the third quarter, the company’s sales fell 14% to 173,494 units.

However, during December 2008, the company achieved record monthly retail sales of over 76,700 units.