Corus of approval for aluminium sale

BRITISH/Dutch steel giant Corus yesterday said it planned to sell most of its aluminium business for 826 million (£572m), which together with strong profits for 2005 sent its shares to a four-year high.

Corus, which employs 280 at its plant at Dalzell, near Motherwell, said it had signed a non-binding letter of intent on the aluminium sale with Aleris International of the US.

Analysts welcomed the move as well as a rise in Corus's pre-tax profits last year to 580m from 567m in 2004. The shares closed up 11 per cent at 85.25p.