Hong Kong (AFP) - Rusal, the world's largest aluminium producer, said Wednesday it had bounced back into the black in the second quarter, buoyed by improving metal prices and cost-control measures.
The Hong Kong-listed company reported a profit of $116 million for the three months ending June 30, compared with a loss of $325 million in the previous quarter.
However, it still suffered a loss of $209 million on a six-month basis, although that compared with a $439 million shortfall a year earlier.
It is the first time the firm has reported a quarterly profit since the first three months of last year, according to a filing handed to the Hong Kong stock exchange.
"The market environment is improving," board chairman Matthias Warnig said in the filing, adding that the second quarter saw "clear evidence of the beginning of a sustained recovery" following a profound dip in prices on the London Metal Exchange earlier this year.
Total quarterly revenue grew 6.5 percent from the first quarter to $2.26 billion thanks to higher prices.
The firm has been working to control costs and enhance margins after it reported in March an annual loss of $3.22 billion for 2013.
At the time it said a global economic recovery in the next two years would lead to an uptick in demand.
Aluminium's price improved to $1,798 per tonne in the second quarter from $1,708 per tonne previously, Rusal said.
Recoveries in advanced economies in Europe and United States coupled with expansion in China will fuel global growth, with demand expected to surge 6.5 percent to 55 million tonnes this year, the filing said.
Shares in Rusal closed Wednesday trading down 0.50 percent at HK$3.95 in Hong Kong.