US earnings season gets into swing with Alcoa results later tonight

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Aluminium producer -Alcoa’s results after the US market close tonight signal the start of the second quarter 2012 earnings season. Plenty for investors around the world to digest as many of the world’s biggest companies give some insights on how the eurozone crisis and slowing Chineseeconomy is hitting their bottom lines.

Not only is Alcoa first off the block but its importance lies in being a key barometer of global economic activity. As the world’s largest producer of Aluminium which is used in the manufacture of cars, engineering products, aerospace products and other key materials, it is placed in a group of key companies which truly reflect what the level of global industrial activity currently is and what it is likely to be in the remainder of 2012 and into 2013.

It  is expected to generate a small profit with analysts forecasting earnings of 5 cents a share for the quarter, down from 32 cents in the same period in 2011, with revenue of $5.8 billion, a 11.5% fall  from the year ago quarter.

China’s declining growth tradjectory is certainly hitting Alcoa’s earnings but it is the 3rd and 4th quarter outlook which will be fascinating to learn.

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