Russian Federation aluminium behemoth U.C. Rusal released results for the third quarter yesterday. Though still laboring under sanctions imposed on it by the Trump administration, Rusal posted a 55-percent jump in net profits in the just-ended quarter.
In the third quarter Rusal smelted 940 thousand metric tons of primary aluminium, up by 1 percent on the year and up by 0.1 percent on the quarter. The firm refined 2,000 thousand metric tons of alumina, an increase of 1.8 percent over the previous year and up by 4 percent over the prior quarter. Rusal mined 3,848 thousand metric tons of bauxite ore in the third quarter, a rise of 40.3 percent year-on-year and 15.9 percent over the previous quarter.
Rusal’s total sales of aluminium and related alloys totaled 1,046 thousand metric tons, good for an 8.1-percent increase on the year and a 33.6-percent leap over the previous quarter. Average premiums over LME prices in the quarter came to US$167 per metric ton, up by 3.1 percent over last year and up 7.1 percent over the prior quarter.
Revenue for the quarter totaled US$2,918 million, an 18.6-percent increase year-on-year and up 29.5 percent over Q3. Adjusted EBITDA figured at US$676 million, a rise of 23.1 percent on the year and 22.5 percent on the quarter. Profit in Q3 totaled US$597 million, good for a 91.3-percent leap on the year, and up by 46.3 percent over Q2.
Although Rusal’s numbers were up almost uniformly across the board, company representatives counseled caution, noting that the firm continues to labor under the specter of United States sanctions.
“The increase in performance indicators in the third quarter of 2018 is a result of a one-off recovery effect after a significant reduction in sales volume in the second quarter of 2018 when the sanctions were announced,” explained a Rusal representative to Reuters.
Though the firm hesitated to make predictions about the company’s performance due to uncertainty surrounding sanctions, Rusal said that a significant rise in production costs, a dearth in raw materials, and significant deficits in ex-China supplies of aluminium and alumina will all conspire to make aluminuim prices volatile for the near future.