Vehicle component supplier Federal Signal Corp. saw its earnings slightly rise in the second quarter of 2001 versus the same period last year on relatively flat sales, yet its net income for the first half of 2001 dipped slightly below last year’s levels.

Federal Signal said its diluted earnings per share rose 37 cents for the second quarter compared to 36 cents a year ago. Second quarter 2001 net sales were $287 million, flat compared with last year. For the first half of 2001, net income dropped slightly to $28.3 million compared to $30.0 million last year on sales of $545 million for the first six months of this year, compared to $547 million in 2000.

The company said that municipal demand for Federal Signal’s street sweepers, coupled with the positive impact of the late first quarter acquisition of the assets of Athey Products Corp., resulted in a 40% increase in new orders for that segment. Deliveries were strong in all U.S. and European municipal markets, though deliveries of U.S. industrial vacuum trucks were down about 40%, reflecting weak industrial/contractor market demand.

The company’s Fire Rescue Group’s earnings rose sharply, up 70% on a 6% sales increase. Operating margin rose to 9.0% from 5.6% last year, with new orders increasing 10%, Federal Signal said.