|Rusal says losses narrowed in Q1
Rusal (0486), the world's largest aluminium producer, on Tuesday said its net loss in the first three months of 2014 had narrowed sharply and signalled a pick-up in global demand for the metal.
The Hong Kong-listed Russian giant reported a loss of US$325 million in January-March, compared with a US$2.71 billion loss in the previous quarter.
Chief executive officer Oleg Deripaska said in a filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange that cost cutting and curtailing of inefficient capacity had led to "significant improvement'' in the firm's bottom line.
"While it is too soon to say the aluminium market has fully turned the corner, we are seeing positive trends, such as robust consumption growth,'' he said.
The firm has been hit by record-low aluminium prices triggered by excess global supply and economic uncertainty and it suffered a loss of US$3.22 billion last year owing to tumbling prices and restructuring costs.
Total revenue in the first quarter shrank US$559 million to US$2.12 billion year-on-year.
Shares in Rusal were up 2.86 percent by the break in Hong Kong.
The firm forecast global demand to surge six percent to 55 million tonnes in 2014 driven by growth in China as well as in advanced economies such as those in Europe and the United States.
The average price of aluminium has fallen to US$1,708 per tonne from US$1,769 in the previous quarter as quoted at the London Metal Exchange.
A plan announced in November last year by the London Metals Exchange to streamline deliveries of base metals have angered producers around the world and Rusal in December triggered a judicial review of the plans. --AFP