Analyst estimates for Alcoa Inc.
(NYSE:AA), the world's third-largest aluminum producer, are bullish with expectations of $0.06 earnings per share on overall quarterly revenue of $5.6 billion.
If predictions hold as expected, this will be a sharp contrast to last years' $0.03-per-share loss on earnings of $5.99 billion. Reasons for favorable sentiment included a rebound in aluminum prices, which are forecast to grow by 6.5% in 2013. With improving numbers from China pointing to a recovery, increased infrastructure spending in the region could spur demand beyond the price forecast for the year.
Alcoa has worked to address pessimists' primary concern -- its $8.3 billion in debt -- through cost-cutting measures. Last year it shut down a dated smelter in Italy, and partnered to build an $10.8 billion plant in Saudi Arabia. Combining all stages of aluminum production, the facility houses Alcoa's lowest cost production to date.
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