Business

Alcoa profit better than expected

Alcoa Inc. kicked off the U.S. second-quarter earnings reporting season with better-than-expected results of $136 million US, or 13 cents a share.

Markets eye earnings season

Alcoa Inc. kicked off the U.S. second-quarter earnings reporting season Monday with better-than-expected results of $136 million US, or 13 cents a share.

Many analysts had expected the largest U.S. aluminum company, based in Pittsburgh, to make between 11 and 12 cents.

Aluminum rolls are cooled before they are cut to order size at Alcoa's plant in Newburgh, Ind., in this photo from 2006. Alcoa kicked off the U.S. earnings reporting season Monday with better-than-expected results. ((Daniel R. Patmore/Associated Press))

Revenue was $5.2 billion, better than the widely estimated $5.02 billion.

Alcoa's results came after the markets closed but in after-hours trading among large institutional investors such as pension funds, its shares rose 33 cents, or more than three per cent, to $11.20.

Alcoa also raised its estimate for growth in global aluminum consumption this year to 12 per cent from 10 per cent.

Investors will be watching earnings for clues about the strength of the U.S. economy and for what corporate outlooks suggest about activity for the rest of the year.

The Toronto stock market closed lower Monday, with the S&P/TSX composite index losing 4.69 points, or 0.04 per cent, to 11,565.76, while the Canadian dollar closed down .35 of a cent at 96.39 cents US.

The stronger U.S. dollar helped push down oil. The contract for August delivery closed off $1.14 cents to $74.95 US a barrel.

New York's Dow Jones industrial average finished the day up 18.24 points, or 0.2 per cent, to 10,216.27.

The Nasdaq composite index was up 1.91 points, or 0.09 per cent, to 2,198.36, and the S&P 500 index was up 0.79 of a point, or 0.07 per cent, to 1,078.75.

With files from The Canadian Press

now