Alcoa kicks off US results week

US aluminium producer Alcoa beat some Wall Street forecasts yesterday with its fourth-quarter figures, posting income of $258m (£166m) compared to a $277m loss a year ago. Revenue rose four per cent to $5.65bn thanks in part to higher aluminium prices, which the firm said will rise a further 12 per cent on the back of surging demand in 2011. However, shares fell in after-hours trading after the firm fell short of analyst revenue estimates of $5.7bn. Alcoa is traditionally the first company in the Dow Jones index to post its quarterly results.