BankAmerica Corp., parent of the world's largest bank, reported 1978 income before securities transactions rose 30.3 percent to $514 million ($3.53 a share) from $395 million ($2.71) a year earlier.

In the fourth quarter, income before securities transactions increased 34.4 percent to $146 million ( $1) from $109 million (75 cents) in the final quarter of 1977.

BankAmerica President A. W. Clausen said improvement in net interest revenue continued to be the most significant factor in the year's overall earnings growth.

Clausen said average domestic real estate loans outstanding increased by 26 percent and average consumer loans grew by 29 percent. Foreign loans grew by 15 percent over the previous year, but a large portion of the gain was the result of foreign currency translation, the bank said.

Bank of America's loan loss provision increased 20.5 percent to $177 million in 1978 from $147 million a year ago, loan losses for the year totaled $101 million, up from $96 million in 1977, and assets grew 15.8 percent to $94.9 billion at year-end.

Trans World Corp., parent company of Trans World Airlines, said it lost $12.1 million in the fourth quarter of 1978, but finished with a profit for the year as a whole. The firm attributed the loss to slow growth of TWA traffic levels in the quarter.

"We had a relatively slow traffic growth for the airline in the fourth quarter," said spokesman Lois H. Fourie. He said that, while other airlines were reporting huge increases in traffic in the quarter. TWA did not because of its routes. "The northsouth carriers did well, but we're primarily an east-west carrier," he said. TWA's traffic growth was 8.4 percent in the quarter, he added.

The news sent Trans World's stock down $1.875 to $17.75 as of the 4 p.m. close of the New York Stock Exchange.

The firm said 1978 earnings were $86.6 million ($4.54 a share) compared to $57.3 million (3.33) in 1977. Sales for the year were $3.63 billion, up from $3.33 billion.

Fourth-quarter sales were $896.7 million, up from $862.6 million in 1977, when earnings were $8.8 million (49 cents).

In addition to TWA, Trans World owns Hilton International, which operates hotels overseas, and Canteen Corp., a food service company.

Atlantic Richfield Co. rolled up sharply higher profits for the final 1978 quarter and full year.

The company noted that pre-tax earnings were up 44 percent from 1977, principally because 1978 marked the first full year of production from Alaska's North Slope.

Earnings for the final quarters totaled $222.57 million ($1.82 a share) against $171.12 million ($1.40) a year earlier. For the full year, te company earned $804.32 million ($6.60) against $701.15 million ($5.76) in 1977.

Revenues were $3.27 billion against [Word Illegible] billion for the quarter and $12.73 billion for the full year, up from $11.41 billion.

Carterpillar Tractor Co. announced record profits in 1978 of $566.3 million ($6.56 a share), $1.40 a share more than the previous high of $5.16 earned in 1977.

The firm, which manufactures farm and heavy construction vehicles, said its sales reached a record $7.22 billion in 1978.