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Century Aluminum reports first quarter profit

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Century Aluminum reported a first quarter profit of $8.3 million Thursday, a turnaround from the $4.4 million loss the company saw during the first quarter of 2012.

Meanwhile, company executives reiterated desires to reopen the company's smelting plant in Ravenswood.

The company posted first quarter aluminum sales of $321.3 million, compared with $326.2 million for the first quarter of 2012. Shipments of were also down slightly at 158,776 tons, compared with 159,967 tons the year before.

A few one-time accounting adjustments boosted the company's profits by $17.9 million during the quarter.

Earlier this month, the company issued a WARN notice to employees at its Hawesville, Ky., plant. Company officials said that plant would shut down Aug. 20 if officials cannot reach an agreement on lower power rates with the local utility provider.

Meanwhile, CEO Michael Bless said the company was continuing to work with Appalachian Power to negotiate a rate structure that will help the company restart the Ravenswood plant.

"The restart of Ravenswood remains a priority, and we are in discussions with the power provider and other key constituencies aimed at finding a suitable arrangement," Bless said.


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