- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 7, 2009

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Aluminum producer Alcoa Inc. said Tuesday it will cut 13,500 jobs, or 13 percent of its work force, and slash spending and output to cope with the global economic slowdown.

The Pittsburgh-based company also said 1,700 contractors will be cut as part of a broad-based plan to reduce costs that includes a global salary and hiring freeze.

As a result of its actions, Alcoa expects fourth-quarter charges of between $900 million and $950 million. The company plans to report quarterly results Jan. 12. Alcoa also said the moves are expected to save the company about $450 million annually, before taxes.

“These are extraordinary times, requiring speed and decisiveness to address the current economic downturn,” said Klaus Kleinfeld, Alcoa’s president and chief executive.

The news comes after Alcoa announced production reductions last fall. It said Tuesday it will further limit smelting by more than 135,000 metric tons per year, lowering total aluminum output by more than 750,000 metric tons annually, or 18 percent.

Shares of Alcoa fell nearly 4 percent in after-hours trade after rising 26 cents, or 2.2 percent, to close at $12.12 on Tuesday.

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