With Aluminum Prices Low, Will Alcoa 951 Lead to Higher Margins?

Alcoa Inc. is betting that as Ford Motor Co. and other auto OEMs continue lightweighting their vehicles, their “Alcoa 951,” a pre-treatment coating that improves aluminum’s stickiness, will pave the way to higher profit margins.

Folks at Alcoa’s Technical Center in Upper Burrell, who created Alcoa 951 fifteen years ago, are now the ones that Klaus Kleinfeld and others in Alcoa’s C-suite hope will boost the company’s margins as carmarkers “need to take costs out, and glued and screwed technology that uses Alcoa 951 is more amenable to a high-volume cost structure where millions of vehicles are produced,” CTO Ray Kilmer told the Pittsburgh Tribune Review. “That is spurring more competition between aluminum and steel for a bigger share of vehicle curb weight.”

Current Aluminum Prices

Following a two-day decline, the Indian aluminum cash price climbed up 4.2 percent on Friday, September 6.

* Get the complete prices every day on the MetalMiner IndX℠

On the LME, the primary aluminum cash price inched up 0.5 percent to $1,754 per metric ton. On the LME, the aluminum 3-month price rose 0.2 percent to $1,799 per metric ton.

Chinese aluminum prices were mixed for the day. After two changeless days, the cash price of Chinese aluminum fell 0.5 percent. After three straight days of no change, the price of Chinese aluminum billet decreased by 0.3 percent. The price of Chinese aluminum scrap remained essentially flat. The price of Chinese aluminum bar was unchanged.

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