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Alcoa Q1 Profit Trumps Street View As Aluminum Shipments And Prices Rise

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Alcoa Corp. (AA), the largest producer of aluminum in the US, Thursday reported a first-quarter profit that more than doubled from a year ago, driven by increased shipments and prices. Both adjusted earnings and revenues for the quarter trumped Wall Street analysts' estimates.

Pittsburgh-based Alcoa reported first-quarter profit of $175 million or $0.93 per share, an increase from last year's profit of $80 million or $0.43 per share last year.

Excluding one-time items, earnings for the quarter were $150 million or $0.79 per share, compared to last year's loss of $42 million or $0.23 per share. On average, 8 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected earnings of $0.46 per share.

Revenues for the quarter rose to $2.87 billion from $2.38 billion a year ago. Analysts had a consensus revenue estimate of $2.65 billion. Revenue growth were driven by higher aluminum and alumina prices, combined with increased shipments.

"We had an excellent first quarter with our best quarterly result since a record-setting year in 2018," said Alcoa President and CEO Roy Harvey. "We excelled from the top line to the bottom line, controlling production costs and capturing the benefits of improved demand and stronger prices for alumina and aluminum."

Alumina shipments rose to 2.47 million metric tons from 2.37 million metric tons last year. Aluminum shipments rose to 831 thousand metric tons from 725 thousand metric tons last year. Bauxite shipments increased to 1.5 million dry metric tons from 1.4 million last year.

Average price per metric ton of alumina increased to $308 from $299 last year, while aluminum's average price rose to $2,308 per metric ton from $1,988 per metric ton last year.

Looking forward to 2021, the company now expects total alumina shipments to between 14.0 and 14.1 million metric tons. Previously, the company expected alumina shipments to be stable compared to 2020 and come between 13.9 and 14.0 million metric tons.

Alcoa said it is expecting a strong 2021 based on continued economic recovery and increased demand for aluminum in all end markets.

AA closed Thursday's trading at $32.84, down $0.55 or 1.65%, on the NYSE. The stock, however, gained $0.86 or 2.62%, in the after-hours trading.

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