April 25, 2018 / 5:15 AM / in 6 months

Aluminium maker Hydro to miss cost cutting target amid Brazil woes

* Q1 underlying EBIT NOK 3.15 bln vs poll NOK 3.06 bln

* Graphic: tmsnrt.rs/2FapPWM

OSLO, April 25 (Reuters) - Norwegian aluminium-maker Norsk Hydro will miss its 2018 cost-cutting target as its troubled Brazilian operation continues to work at reduced capacity following a spill in February from a major plant, it said on Wednesday.

A regulatory order to cut output from Hydro’s Alunorte, the world’s largest alumina refinery, also triggered cutbacks at the firm’s nearby Albras aluminium plant and a scramble among other factories and customers for supplies.

Hydro’s outage and U.S. sanctions imposed on the world’s number two aluminium producer, Rusal, caused fears of a supply crunch, briefly lifting the metal’s price this month to seven-year highs, although the rally later faded.

Hydro’s underlying Jan-March earnings before interest and taxes rose by 38 percent year-on-year to 3.15 billion Norwegian crowns ($398 million), beating the 3.06 billion expected in a Reuters poll of analysts. ($1 = 7.9145 Norwegian crowns)

Reporting by Terje Solsvik, editing by Gwladys Fouche

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