* Q1 EPS $0.05 vs. est EPS $0.06
* Q1 rev falls 11 pct
* Sees Q2 EPS $0.03-$0.08 vs. est EPS $0.10
* Sees professional staffing services improving (Adds
conference call comments; updates share movement)
April 27 Staffing firm Robert Half
International Inc (RHI.N) posted lower-than-expected quarterly
results, hurt by lower margins at two of its segments, and
forecast second-quarter earnings below market expectations.
The company, on a conference call with analysts, forecast
second-quarter earnings of 3 cents to 8 cents per share, on
revenue of $730 million to $780 million.
Analysts were expecting earnings of 10 cents a share, on
revenue of $765.9 million for the second quarter, according to
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Staffing service providers in the United States were hit by
the recession as clients cut jobs or froze hiring.
However, the latest report from the Labor Department in
April indicated that U.S. employers created jobs in March at
the fastest rate in three years as private firms stepped up
Robert Half said it is seeing some demand for its
professional staffing services as economic conditions improved
in North America and other parts of the world.
"Many companies that made deep personnel cuts are having to
quickly hire as business demand grows or when they lose workers
due to turnover," CEO Harold Messmer said on the call.
The professional staffing division, which accounts for
about 7 percent of staffing revenue, posted an operating income
of $3.1 million for the quarter, against a loss last year.
For the first quarter, the company earned $8.5 million, or
5 cents a share, compared with $8.8 million, or 6 cents a
share, a year earlier.
Revenue fell 11 percent to $737.2 million.
Analysts on average expected earnings of 6 cents a share on
revenue of $750.8 million.
Gross margin at its temporary and consultant staffing
segment fell 14 percent to $201.1 million, while permanent
placement staffing segment fell 3 percent to $48.6 million.
Shares of the company fell 9 percent to $28.50 in trade
after the bell. They closed at $31.40 Tuesday on the New York
(Reporting by Amulya Nagaraj in Bangalore; Editing by Don
Sebastian and Gopakumar Warrier)