Net income of $52 million for the 2010 second quarter (Q2), ended 30 June 2010, was up from a net loss of $56 million in the prior year.

Hexion Specialty Chemicals, Columbus, Ohio, USA, produces resins for industrial applications. Its composites resins porfolio includes polyester, vinyl ester, phenolic and epoxy resin systems.

"Our strong results reflect improved overall demand as well as leverage from our ongoing productivity initiatives," says Craig O. Morrison, chairman, president and CEO of Hexion. "In the second quarter of 2010, we experienced volumne increases of approximately 30% versus the prior year period and 8% sequentially."

The improved Q2 earning were also driven by recovery in the company's base epoxy business and continued strong performances in several speciality products, including speciality epoxy, Hexion says.

"Short-term tightening in global capacity also contributed to the improvement in our base epoxy and acrylic monomers businesses, which boosted our second quarter 2010 results," Morrison adds. "We expect this short-term under-capacity to continue in the third quarter of 2010 before stabilising by year end 2010."

Six month results

For the first six months of 2010 Hexion reports sales of $2.5 billion, a 33% increase on the first half of 2009. Volume increase across the majority of its product lines drove this increase.

Net income of $45 million for the first six months of 2010 compares to $60 million in the first half of 2009. (Net income for the 2009 six months included a gain of $182 million from the extinguishment of debt for amounts less than the face value of the debt securities.)

Outlook

"Despite the ongoing the volatility in various leading economic indicators, we remain optimistic that the recovery in volumes will continue in 2010," Morrison says. "In addition, we believe our productivity efforts and our ongoing Six Sigma initiatives should continue to create operating leverage going forward as we focus on serving our global customers."