KANATA, Ontario, Canada, Nov. 5 -- GSI Lumonics Inc. reported net earnings of $2 million on sales of $78 million for the third quarter of fiscal 1999. Gross profit for the quarter was $30.5 million, which the company attributed to more favorable product mix and sales improvements in certain markets. Research and development expenses of $8.1 million, or 10 percent of sales, were recorded; general, administrative and selling expenses were $19 million, or 24 percent of sales. As of October 1, 1999, backlogged orders totaled $81 million, increasing 11 percent from the $73-million backlog at the end of the second quarter. We're pleased with third quarter performance in three ways, said Charles D. Winston, CEO of GSI Lumonics. First, it's a distinct improvement over the net loss incurred in the second quarter this year of $3.8 million and means we're running on schedule with our earnings recovery program. Second, we achieved sequential growth of 13 percent in sales and 16 percent in bookings over the second quarter. Third, with stronger order backlog and bookings, we have positive momentum going into the final quarter of 1999.