The Quad cities-based manufacturer Deere and Company announced record third-quarter earnings today. Deere reported third-quarter earnings of $617-million, up 47% as worldwide sales increased 16%.

Deere says equipment sales generated a profit of $890-million for the quarter. Deere’s C.E.O., Samuel Allen, says they benefited from positive conditions in the U.S. farm sector, particularly in terms of demand for large equipment, but European markets are down sharply. Allen says demand for construction and forestry equipment is improved from last year but still remains far below normal levels.

Company equipment sales are projected to be up about 12% for fiscal 2010 and up about 32% for the fourth quarter compared with the same periods a year ago. According to Allen, Deere’s consistent investment in advanced new products and expanded global capacity is sustaining current performance and puts the company on a solid footing for the future. [More on Deere’s earnings]