Updated from 10:54 a.m.

Alcoa

(AA) - Get Alcoa Corp. Report

said it beat Wall Street's earnings estimates for the first quarter, despite a drop in demand, lower metal prices and increased energy costs.

The aluminum producer said it earned $404 million, or 46 cents a share, in the first quarter. Fifteen analysts polled by

TheStreet Recommends

Thomson Financial/First Call

were expecting the company to post earnings of 43 cents in the period. Alcoa earned $347 million, or 47 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Revenue grew to $6.18 billion from $4.51 billion in the same period last year.

Alcoa said a decline in demand from certain end-markets, lower metals prices and increased energy costs hurt its first-quarter earnings, but the losses were partially offset by cost-cutting initiatives and the positive impact from acquisitions. The company also said it has curtailed production at various sites and sold several small noncore businesses, which added 2 cents a share to the bottom line.

Shares of Alcoa, which is based in Pittsburgh, gained $1.88, or 5.3%, to $37.43 in recent

New York Stock Exchange

trading.