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CNBC's Week In Review: April 8-14, 2012

There was a lot of gloom going into the week about earnings season. And Alcoa was supposed to kick off the economic dirge. But guess what? even though no one thought it would. Now when a company surprises Wall Street like that business folks start asking if it was something specific to the company or something bigger that a lot of companies can benefit from. In Alcoa’s case analysts noted it made about the same amount of revenue as last year, even though aluminum prices declined … so worldwide d

» more from Two-Way Street With Allen Wastler

Earnings Kickoff: Alcoa's Big Beat

There was a lot of gloom going into the week about earnings season. And Alcoa was supposed to kick off the economic dirge. But guess what? The metal company turned a profit, even though no one thought it would.

Now, when a company surprises Wall Street like that, business folks start asking if it was something specific to the company or something bigger that a lot of companies can benefit from. In Alcoa’s case, analysts noted it made about the same amount of revenue as last year, even though aluminum prices declined … so worldwide demand must be up and things in general might be turning around.

But Alcoa’s bright spot was also due to some company-specific moves as well. As its CEO noted on CNBC, it’s been focusing on keeping costs in line.

Is it a good omen for the rest of earnings season? We'll find out next week, when a dozen Dow components and nearly a fifth of the S&P 500 report.

Photo: Greg Pease | Stone | Getty Images