Alcoa (AA) Posts Surprise 'Beat' to Start Q1 Earnings Season

April 10, 2012 4:29 PM EDT
Alcoa (NYSE: AA) kicked off the first-quarter earnings season with a solid "beat" after the close Tuesday.

The aluminum giant reported income from continuing operations declined sharply from $308 million in the same quarter last year to $94 million, or $0.09 per share. Excluding the impact of special items, income from continuing operations was $105 million, or $0.10 per share. This beat the Wall Street consensus looking for a $0.04 per share loss.

Revenue rose 0.8 percent from last year's first quarter to $6.006 billion, beating the Wall Street consensus of $5.77 billion.

Alcoa said the improvement over last year was driven by strong productivity improvements across all businesses, higher realized prices for aluminum, and improved volume and mix. This was partially offset by lower realized alumina price and higher input costs

"Performance rebounded strongly this quarter due to our proactive cash sustainability actions, our relentless focus on profitable growth, and stabilizing markets," said CEO Klaus Kleinfeld.

"We are successfully executing on our aggressive strategy to move down the cost curve in our upstream businesses, and drive to record profitability in our midstream and downstream businesses. Challenges remain in this economy, but we approach them better prepared than ever before."

Shares of Alcoa last traded at $9.80 in the after-hours session Monday, up 4.8 percent from the Tuesday's New York close.

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