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ALCAN ALUMINIUM LIMITED REPORTS 1992 RESULTS

 MONTREAL, Jan. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Alcan Aluminium Limited (NYSE: AL) reports a consolidated loss of $112 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 1992, compared to a loss of $36 million in 1991. After preference share dividends, the loss per common share for the year was 60 cents, versus a loss per common share of 25 cents in 1991.
 The loss for 1992 included environmental and rationalization charges of $58 million after tax, or 26 cents per common share. The environmental charges were for the future removal of permanently closed potlines and for the restoration of sites in Quebec. The rationalization charges cover a wide range of items at various Alcan locations. Results for 1992 also included a charge of $8 million after- tax associated with the adoption of a new method of accounting for retiree health care and insurance benefits. The 1991 results included rationalization charges, net of tax and other credits, of $60 million, or 27 cents per common share.
 Commenting on the year, David Morton, chairman and chief executive officer, noted that, "1992 was a year of frustration. Alcan's loss does not reflect the strength of demand, which led fabricated product volumes to a record high, nor our determined and successful efforts to reduce costs. It reflects almost entirely the low prices for aluminum that persisted through the year."
 Looking to 1993, Mr. Morton stated, "the outlook is for little change in the supply-demand balance for the industry. Exports from the CIS seem likely to continue at their present level, and unless there are further cutbacks of high-cost smelter capacity, supply will continue to outrun demand. In this environment, cost containment will remain a priority."
 Total costs, before interest and taxes, were $225 million lower than in the previous year. This reduction was achieved despite the impact of inflation and the increased quantity of products sold. The net effect of changes in exchange rates on total costs in 1992 was negligible.
 For the fourth quarter of 1992, the company reported a loss of $56 million, or 29 cents per common share, which included environmental and rationalization charges of $49 million, or 22 cents per common share. In the comparable quarter of 1991, Alcan reported a loss of $36 million, or 18 cents per common share, which included $5 million of rationalization charges net of tax credits, or 2 cents per common share.
 In Canada, Alcan posted a loss of $57 million in the fourth quarter, virtually the same as one year ago. Improved profitability in the smelter operations was offset by the above-mentioned charges and poorer results from downstream businesses. In the United States, the company posted a loss of $20 million, which was greater than the $9 million loss posted in the year-ago quarter due to rationalization charges and lower prices for rolled products. The continuing recession in Brazil led to a loss of $13 million in South America compared to $9 million one year ago. In Europe, operating results improved in the United Kingdom and Germany. However, net income was only $1 million compared to $5 million in 1991, which included a large tax credit in Germany. Pacific operations posted a profit of $13 million for the quarter, $9 million higher than the year-ago quarter, largely due to better results in Australia and Southeast Asia.
 Ingot product shipments in the fourth quarter were 257,000 tonnes, 26,000 tonnes more than one year ago. The average realized price on sales of the company's own primary ingot during the 1992 quarter was $1,281 per tonne, compared with $1,309 one year ago. For the year, the average realized price was $1,330 per tonne, 8 percent less than the average for 1991. Fourth quarter fabricated product volumes, including those fabricated from customer-owned metal, were 371,000 tonnes versus 334,000 tonnes in the same quarter last year. The average realized price on sales of fabricated products in the fourth quarter was $3,309 per tonne, compared with $3,763 per tonne in the year-ago quarter. For the year, the average realized price was $3,432 per tonne, 7 percent less than in 1991.
 ALCAN ALUMINIUM LIMITED
 Key Data
 (in millions of US$, except where indicated)
 Periods ended Fourth Quarter Year
 Dec. 31 1992 1991 1992 1991
 Sales and operating
 revenues 1,845 1,829 7,596 7,748
 Net income (Loss) (56) (36) (112) (36)
 Net income (Loss) per
 common share (in US$) (0.29) (0.18) (0.60) (0.25)
 Shipments (in thousands of tonnes)
 Ingot products 257 231 870 866
 Fabricated products 333 296 1,389 1,333
 Fabrication of customer-
 owned metal 38 38 206 145
 Total 628 565 2,465 2,344
 As announced previously, Alcan now accounts for retiree health care and insurance benefits on an accrual basis instead of a cash basis. This change in accounting policy, while not compulsory in Canada, is in line with the recently introduced accounting standard in the U.S., FAS 106. Alcan adopted the change effective Jan. 1, 1992. As required under Canadian accounting rules, retained earnings at that date will be reduced by an after-tax charge of $114 million to reflect the company's accumulated liability for such benefits. This treatment differs from U.S. accounting rules that require the liability be charged against income in the opening quarter of the year in which the change in policy is adopted. Due to this change, previously reported results for the first three quarters of 1992 have been restated to include an after-tax charge of $2 million in each quarter.
 The average number of common shares outstanding during the fourth quarter of 1992 was 223.8 million compared to 223.3 million in the same quarter last year.
 NOTE: All dollar amounts are stated in U.S. dollars.
 All tonnages are stated in metric tonnes of 2204.6 pounds
 each.
 All figures are unaudited.
 ALCAN ALUMINIUM LIMITED
 Consolidated Statement of Income
 (unaudited, in millions of US$, except per share amounts)
 Periods ended Fourth Quarter Year
 Dec. 31 1992 1991 1992 1991
 Revenues
 Sales and operating revenues $1,845 $1,829 $7,596 $7,748
 Other income 18 28 69 82
 1,863 1,857 7,665 7,830
 Costs and expenses
 Cost of sales and operating
 expenses 1,537 1,573 6,300 6,455
 Depreciation 116 110 449 429
 Selling, administrative and general
 expenses 149 167 596 635
 Research and development expenses 31 37 125 131
 Interest 59 67 254 246
 Other expenses 64 78 118 163
 1,956 2,032 7,842 8,059
 Income (Loss) before income taxes
 and other items (93) (175) (177) (229)
 Income taxes (23) (120) (17) (104)
 Income (Loss) before other items (70) (55) (160) (125)
 Equity income 15 18 53 89
 Minority interests (1) 1 (5) -
 Net income (Loss) $ (56) $ (36) $ (112) $ (36)
 Dividends on preference shares 10 5 23 20
 Net income (Loss) attributable to
 common shareholders (66) (41) (135) (56)
 Net income (Loss) per common share$(0.29) $(0.18) $(0.60)$(0.25)
 Dividends per common share $0.075 $ 0.15 $ 0.45 $ 0.86
 -0- 01/19/93
 /CONTACT: Jacques Dubuc of Alcan Aluminium Limited, 514-848-8114/
 (AL)


CO: Alcan Aluminium Limited ST: Quebec IN: MNG SU: ERN

AH -- NY058 -- 6379 01/19/93 13:07 EST
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