Alcoa Inc (NYSE:AA) will again be the first company to report its earnings on Monday when it releases its first quarter results. The company has scheduled a conference call with analysts Monday evening after it releases its results.

Alcoa

Manufacturing industry watchers are typically very interested in Alcoa’s results, which can even be an indication of how the overall U.S. economy is doing. The company is also part of the the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial average.

Analysts are a bit concerned about Alcoa Inc (NYSE:AA)’s results because of aluminum prices. Analysts at Macquarie Equities Research are predicting 7 cents earnings per share and expect more downside risks than upside expectations.

Jefferies analysts are also expecting the company’s results to be rather subdued. They agree that aluminum prices are a concern and the company is facing strong headwinds because inventory is high right now. They said that although shares of Alcoa aren’t expensive, they “are not inexpensive enough to warrant a buy recommendation.

Jefferies analysts have set a Hold rating on the stock.

Even if Alcoa Inc (NYSE:AA) doesn’t return positive earnings this time around, Nashville Business Journal points out that Alcoa has a lot to gain from the tightening fuel economy restrictions on vehicles. Aluminum is an important ingredient in the auto industry’s objective to build lighter vehicles because it is much lighter than steel.

It’s expected that the volume of aluminum that’s in the average car will jump from 343 pounds up to 550 pounds within the next 10 to 15 years.

Shares of Alcoa Inc (NYSE:AA) were trading mostly flat Wednesday afternoon.

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