Sales rise at Owens Corning

Owens Corning reported net sales of $1.5 billion for its second quarter of 2011, a 5% increase over sales of $1.4 billion in the same quarter of 2010.

Net income for the quarter, which ended June 30, was $78 million, compared with net earnings of $937 million a year ago. 

In the building materials division, net sales were higher in the second quarter of 2011, as compared with the same period in 2010. The increase in net sales during the second quarter was the result of increased sales volumes within the roofing business. Offsetting this increase were lower sales volumes within the insulation business and the loss of sales from the divestiture of the U.S. masonry products business.

"Owens Corning delivered a strong second quarter," said chairman and CEO Mike Thaman. "The actions we took in the quarter built significant momentum across the company and position us for a strong second half."

In terms of outlook, the Toledo, Ohio-based company had previously estimated that composites would grow EBIT in excess of 40% for the year. However, as a result of a near-term correction in the Chinese wind energy market, as well as higher-than-anticipated inflation costs, the company now expects EBIT growth of about 25%.

Owens Corning continues to believe that the insulation business will be profitable in the second half of 2011. This outlook is consistent with the company's previous guidance and reflects strong operating execution in a continuing weak market. The company’s new EcoTouch insulation product has been successfully launched across all residential markets in the United States and Canada.

In roofing, Owens Corning believes full-year EBIT margins of 20% are achievable in 2011. Storm activity in the United States in the first half of the year has created momentum in demand that is expected to continue into the second half of 2011.