Beacon Roofing Supply, the Peabody, Mass.-based roofing distributor, reported second quarter 2009 sales increased 4.9% to $319.3 million from $304.3 million in the same period a year ago.

Sales for the first half of 2009 increased 11.4% to $782.6 million from $702.6 million in last year's first half.

Residential roofing sales grew 37.2% during the quarter, Beacon reported. But sales of non-residential roofing, including commercial sales, and complimentary products fell 12.6% and 27.1% in the period.

The company said that residential roofing sales benefited from year-over-year price increases as well as from strong, although diminishing, re-roofing activity in markets that were affected by Hurricane Ike. In contrast, non-residential were hampered by adverse winter conditions in Beacon's markets that have the largest concentration of commercial business.

Beacon also said that complementary product sales continued to be impacted by both the slowdown in the economy and lower levels of new construction.

For the first half of 2009, residential roofing sales soared 48.7% while non-residential roofing and complementary product sales declined 7.8% and 21.7%. Beacon cited the same factors during the second quarter for first half rise and fall-off.

The distributor reported a net loss of $2.4 million in the second quarter, an upswing from a loss of $8.1 million in 2008, demonstrating a 70% improvement. The Company's net income for the first six months of 2009 was $16.2 million compared to a net loss of $2.9 million in 2008.

Additionally, Beacon revealed that it operated eight fewer branches at the end of the quarter compared to the end of the second quarter 2008. There was also one less business day in the second quarter 2009.

Beacon's operating expenses decreased $2.5 million, or 3.3% in the second quarter due to reductions in selling expenses and general and administrative expenses, mostly from lower fuel costs and insurance costs.

"We continue to emphasize customer service and tight controls over expenses and inventories," Robert Buck, chairman and CEO of Beacon Roofing, said in a prepared statement.

"Our focus in these areas resulted in a solid second quarter and a favorable start to the fiscal year," Buck said.

Beacon Roofing Supply operates 169 branches in 35 states in the United States and in three provinces in Eastern Canada.