CLEVELAND--(Business Wire)-- Ferro Corporation (NYSE: FOE) announced today that net sales for the three months ended September 30, 2009 were $442 million, a decline of 25 percent from the third quarter of 2008. Net sales increased 11 percent, sequentially, from the second quarter of 2009. For the third quarter, the Company recorded income from continuing operations of $2.8 million, or $0.04 per diluted share, compared with income from continuing operations of $3.9 million, or $0.07 per share, in the third quarter of 2008. The third-quarter income from continuing operations was a $13.9 million improvement from a loss from continuing operations of $11.1 million, or $0.27 per share, in the second quarter of 2009. The operating income for the 2009 third quarter included net pre-tax charges of $14.1 million. These charges were primarily related to impairment of goodwill, manufacturing rationalization and other cost reduction activities. Third quarter 2008 operating income was reduced by pre-tax charges of $17.9 million primarily related to restructuring charges, a loss on extinguishment of debt and corporate development activities. "Our positive momentum accelerated in the third quarter resulting in improved gross margins and higher segment income margins compared with the third quarter of 2008, despite lower sales," said James F. Kirsch, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. "The improved margins show that our efforts to lower our sales breakeven level, reduce cost and expense, and restructure the Company are achieving results. Although we have made significant progress, we are continuing our efforts to streamline the business, reduce our cost structure and improve productivity from the manufacturing floor to our corporate support operations. We believe these actions will position us to provide attractive returns to our shareholders as global customer demand continues to recover." 2009 Third-Quarter Results Net sales declined in the 2009 third quarter compared with the prior-year period reflecting the global economic slowdown that accelerated during the fourth quarter of 2008. Demand from customers serving economically cyclical markets including construction, automobiles and appliances continued to gradually improve from a low point in the 2009 first quarter. The Company`s sales decline included reduced sales of precious metals, which contributed approximately 3 percentage points to the 25 percent net sales decline. Changes in foreign currency exchange rates accounted for approximately 1 percentage point of the net sales decline.