Alcoa reports adjusted earnings of $0.03 per share, beating analyst estimates

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Alcoa Inc. reported adjusted earnings per share of $0.03 and revenues of $5.83 billion in the third quarter of 2012. That beat analysts’ predictions that  the company would report earnings to be flat—$0.00—with revenues of $5.57 billion. They had attributed such poor predictions to the ongoing financial crisis in Europe and slowing growth in China and Russia.

The aluminum producer’s earnings mark the unofficial start to earnings season. Ominously, Alcoa’s press release cited “challenging market conditions,” and cut its forecast for aluminum demand growth for 2012 from 7% to 6%.

However, analysts have scoffed at the normal relationship between Alcoa Inc. and the S&P 500 recently. We argue that the company’s earnings call might be more important, as its executives weigh in on everything from beer to aerospace markets. We’ll be following that call at 5 PM ET.

A few more details on the release: without adjustments, Alcoa actually reported losses per share of $0.13. That flat number included one-time losses due to payouts for environmental remediation of a river in New York State and settlement with Aluminium Bahrain (Alba), which had been pending in the U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh.

Read Alcoa’s full earnings release at BusinessWire.