Alcoa profit a positive start to reporting season

Aluminium production giant Alcoa has kicked off US earnings reporting season by hitting its profit target.

Alcoa made $230 million in the fourth quarter by cost cutting to help offset a drop in aluminium prices.

That compares to a loss of $182 million in the same period a year earlier.

Sales topped $5.6 billion, beating analysts expectations.

Alcoa says it expects global aluminium demand to rise by 7 per cent in 2013, up from 6 per cent in 2012.

Chief financial officer Charles McLane says the result came against the backdrop of tepid global growth.

"You know its been a challenging environment and we have a relentless focus from all of our employees, days working, capital reduction and disciplined capital spend that allows us to reach these targets," he said.

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