Ford Motor Co. on Tuesday posted a profit of 1.63 billion U.S. dollars for the third quarter, a slight decline compared to 1.65 billion in the same period a year ago, which still beat analysts\' expectations. The U.S. automaker\'s pre-tax operating profit was 2.2 billion dollars, or 40 cents per share. Ford said that its net income was offset by a higher tax rate. During the third quarter of 2011, Ford had a tax valuation in effect that kept its tax rate at about 10 percent. Right now Ford\' s tax rate is close to 30 percent. The company said that it lost 468 million dollars in Europe last quarter, and has lost about one billion dollars in the region so far this year. It also unveiled a massive restructuring that will see it close three European plants in the next two years. Ford\'s North American operations saw a profit of 2.3 billion dollars during the third quarter, the third consecutive quarter for the region to post profits above 2 billion dollars.