LONDON Oct 9 Recruitment firm Hays reported a
better than expected 1 percent fall in first quarter net fees as
strong growth in Germany, Brazil and Canada helped ride out a
slowdown in its Australian resources market.
The British firm, which specialises in placing workers in
accountancy, construction and IT jobs, posted a 16 percent rise
in net fee growth in its Continental Europe and Rest of World
division, with fees in Germany up a record 25 percent.
Shares in the FTSE 250 firm were up 6 percent to 80.15 pence
at 0708 GMT, with analysts at Jefferies saying the results were
better than feared, having estimated a 4 percent net fee fall.
"Combined with strong cost control, we suspect profitability
may be running ahead of our H1 estimate," analysts said.
Hays said fees in Asia Pacific, a region that has in the
past helped ease the pain of struggling markets elsewhere,
dropped 9 percent in the quarter to September 30 with the
Australian resources market beginning to slow.
Hays' UK market also saw a 9 percent slip in net fee growth.
The recruitment sector has suffered heavily in the last year
as a deteriorating outlook for the economy and weakness in the
banking sector has led to companies delaying hiring and workers
being more cautious about changing jobs in many markets.
On Monday rival recruiter Michael Page International
issued a profit warning, blaming a sharp deterioration in euro
zone markets as the region's debt crisis increasingly weighs on
the real economy.