(Reuters) - Rexam Plc REX.L, the world’s No. 2 drinks can maker by revenue, posted a better-than-expected underlying pretax profit for the first half as increased volumes softened the effect of high aluminium prices and a stronger pound.
The company's shares rose as much as 3.7 percent, making the stock the second-biggest gainer on the FTSE-100 Index .FTSE.
Rexam reported a 4 percent rise in beverage can volumes, driven mostly by strong organic growth in Europe.
Aluminium premiums, or the cost to get metal out of storage, have soared to all-time highs in Europe and North America.
The surge in premiums pushed up the company’s net additional costs to 7 million pounds in the first half.
Rexam’s underlying pretax profit fell to 166 million pounds for the six months ended June 30 from 169 million pounds a year earlier, beating the average analyst estimate of 156.6 million pounds.
Revenue fell 5 percent to 1.88 billion pounds, but was higher than analysts’ average expectation of 1.85 billion pounds.
Shares in the company were up 0.3 percent at 502.5 pence at 11:33 BST on the London Stock Exchange.
Reporting by Aashika Jain in Bangalore; Editing by Robin Paxton and Simon Jennings