If you would refer to Slide 2, I'd like to remind you that today's presentation includes our views about Masco's future performance, which constitute forward-looking statements. These statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause our actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements. We've described these risks and uncertainties in our risk factors in our Form 10-K that we filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Today's presentation also includes non-GAAP financial measures. We've provided a reconciliation of these measurements on our website at www.masco.com.

With that, I'll now turn the call over to our President and Chief Executive Officer, Tim Wadhams. Tim?

Timothy Wadhams

Thank you, Maria. And if you would please move to Slide #4. After a relatively strong start to the year in the first quarter, with sales up about 7% overall, second quarter sales leveled out and were flat compared to last year at $2 billion. We were hit by the negative currency translation. That cost us about $46 million in terms of top line. And excluding that, we've been up about 3% in terms of sales.

From a positive perspective, our international operations were flat in local currencies in a relatively tough environment. We also benefited from price and improved new home construction-related activity.

On the other side, Retail repair/remodel activity was slower, and our sales to key retail customers were flat in the quarter. Margins on an adjusted basis were up 40 basis points, and John will get into the detail there, but we did have some nice leverage in terms of our SG&A expenses, which offset the gross profit decline. We continue to benefit from profit improvement activities as -- and also had a positive price/commodity relationship in the quarter.

Earnings per share on an adjusted basis, at $0.10, exceeded the $0.06 that we reported last year. And we did not pro forma those earnings for negative hedge and negative foreign currency translation, which each cost us about $0.01.

If you liked this article you might like

Will Hurricane Harvey Postpone Fed Tightening?

Ford Has a Key Issue That Overshadows Lift from Harvey Victims Buying New Cars

Dangerous Assumptions on Hurricane Harvey

Dangerous Assumptions on Hurricane Harvey

5 Housing Stocks You Must Immediately Buy