Business: Aluminum's Makers Exult

Prices have doubled, and the industry operates at full blast

Aluminum, one of the lightest and most malleable of metals, traditionally has been a cyclical business. But today its producers, almost alone among metal manufacturers, are exulting over prosperous stability. Makers of steel, zinc, nickel and copper are ailing because of surging costs and rising cheap imports, but the aluminum industry cannot keep up with demand.

Since 1973 the price of aluminum has jumped from 25¢ per Ib. to 53¢. The gap between supply and demand, some industry leaders assert, will drive the price considerably higher, at least to 60¢ by the early...

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