UPDATE 1-Banks boost UK hiring despite Brexit, recruiter Robert Walters says

(Adds CEO comments, rivals, share movements)

April 11 (Reuters) - Investment banks in London have been hiring more staff for specialised finance roles, recruiter Robert Walters said on Tuesday, in comments likely to ease concerns over the impact of Brexit on a mainstay of the British economy.

Banks had sought to fill permanent roles in areas such as investment management, finance control, change management and risk and compliance, as well as seeking temporary staff for cyber security, chief executive and company founder Robert Walters told Reuters.

Banking hiring trends are extremely volatile as companies often announce new jobs only to announce hiring freezes just weeks later, and Walters said it was too early to know if the improvement was sustainable.

Larger rivals PageGroup and Hays have so far pointed to a slowdown as firms rethink their ability to service EU clients from UK bases. They will report quarterly results on Wednesday and Thursday respectively.

However, Walters said talk of banks moving jobs out of London due to concerns about their ability to trade across the bloc had died down.

Language barriers, a shortage of housing and challenging labour laws in other European capitals are barriers to moving.

“We’re not hearing any talk that anybody is going to move. We haven’t had any requests for hiring in any of our centres,” said Walters, whose firm operates in cities such as Paris, Frankfurt, Dublin, Amsterdam and New York.

Robert Walters shares were up 2.7 percent at 443 pence at 1130 GMT after the company reported a sharp rise in first-quarter profit partly due to the “noteable” increase in financial hiring.

PageGroup and Hays were up 3.9 percent and 3.2 percent, featuring among the top FTSE midcap gainers.

Robert Walters’ gross profit rose 33 percent to 78.3 million pounds ($97.3 million) in the quarter ended March 31. It was up 20 percent at constant rates. ($1 = 0.8051 pounds) (Reporting by Esha Vaish in Bengaluru; Editing by Louise Heavens and Keith Weir)