Internet auction site eBay has announced a 10% rise in its third-quarter profits, posting a 31% increase in sales, to $1.4 billion (£748.9m) in the three months up to September. The company’s net income was $281 billion.

The profits rise was driven by a growth in its auctions; its payment service PayPal increased revenue by 41% over last year’s third quarter results.

There were 584 million new listings in the three month period, a rise of 27% on the same period last year. The site is now used by 212 million people worldwide.

Full year sales are predicted to be around $5.9bn, with 2007 revenue growth expected to be in the range of 17% to 21% over 2006 sales.

CEO of eBay Inc Meg Whitman expressed satisfaction with the results:

“Q3 was a very good quarter for the company and a continuation of the strong earnings growth we delivered throughout the first half of the year.”

“As our results demonstrate, we are executing on our strategy to grow out marketplaces, PayPal and Skype businesses individually, and collectively to deliver greater value to our community of users and to our shareholders.”

Internet phone service Skype also posted positive results, users increased by 20% to 113million. Its revenues were $50m, an increase of 13 per cent from the second quarter of 2006.