Owens Corning's building materials segment, which includes its roofing and insulation businesses, reported a 3.6% increase in net sales in the second quarter from the year-earlier period to reach $971 million, while earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) fell 12.7% to $103 million, the company announced today. The composites segment witnessed a 7.7% increase in net sales to $529 million, while EBIT increased 31% to $55 million.

Company-wide, the Toledo-Ohio based firm reported net sales increased 5% to $1.45 billion. Pre-tax earnings improved 14% to $107 million, while net earnings fell to $79 million from $939 million a year ago, largely because of an $843 million swing in income taxes.

Owens Corning's roofing segment posted EBIT of $141 million for the quarter, a 5.3% decrease from last year, while net sales increased 12.5% to $645 million. The company said demand for its roofing products was driven by recent storm activity. The insulation business, meanwhile, saw its EBIT loss widen by $12 million to $38 million, while net sales fell 3% to $326 million.

Overall, gross margin for Owens Corning decreased 1.8% to $279 million. The company reported a $16 million income expense during the quarter, but total operating expenses fell 9.4% to $144 million. EBIT for the company was $135 million, an 8% increase over the same period a year ago.