Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Cancel Anytime
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](,dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

An unprecedented confluence of disruptions roiling the aluminum industry may mean a $1-billion windfall for the top U.S. producer.

With U.S. sanctions on United Co. Rusal fueling a record aluminum rally, Alcoa Corp. lifted its 2018 earnings forecast on Wednesday. It also projected a wider global deficit of the metal this year amid delays in Chinese plant expansions, and said the market for the main ingredient in aluminum is also set to swing into deficit as a giant plant in Brazil operates at a reduced rate.

The outlook for further tightness supports aluminum’s rally to near seven-year highs as supply from Moscow-based Rusal gets shunned in world markets.

Story continues below advertisement

“Considerable uncertainty remains in the global supply chain due to multiple trade actions, sanctions, and supply disruptions,” Alcoa said in a statement accompanying its quarterly earnings.

Alcoa shares were up 4.3 per cent before the start of regular trading on Thursday. The shares had climbed 10 per cent this year before Wednesday’s close. Century Aluminum Co., the only other major U.S. producer of the metal, also rose.

Due to delays in projects to expand smelters in China, Alcoa now sees aluminum demand topping production by as much as 1 million metric tons in 2018, compared with the company’s previous forecast for a shortfall of as much as 700,000 tons.

A partial shutdown at the world’s biggest alumina refinery, in Brazil, is generating further shock waves to the market for the main metal-making ingredient.

In alumina, Alcoa projects a global deficit of 300 thousand metric tons and 1.1 million tons for 2018, “primarily due to supply disruptions in the Atlantic region.” That projection -- which doesn’t include repercussions from the Rusal ban -- compares with last quarter’s expectations for a balanced market.

Pittsburgh-based Alcoa now sees full-year adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of $3.5 billion to $3.7 billion, compared with a previous view of $2.6 billion to $2.8 billion.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error
Tickers mentioned in this story
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to
Comments are closed

We have closed comments on this story for legal reasons or for abuse. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies