GAF Materials Corp. announced today it will cease operations at its Mobile, Ala., plant "as a result of the challenging economy and soft market conditions."

The plant will be reopened when demand revives, Wayne, N.J.-based GAF said in a news release. "We will ensure that there will be no service interruptions, and will be providing further information on sourcing," COO Dick Nowak said.

Roofing sales have been hurt by both the housing downturn and the relative lack of hurricanes, tornadoes, and severe storms this year. For instance, Toledo, Ohio-based Owens Corning revealed earlier today that its roofing sales shrank 28% in the July-to-September period to $404 million, causing pre-tax income to drop nearly in half, to $91 million from a year-earlier $177 million.