Recruiter Hays profit jumps; flags one-time hit from Russia exit

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People look at their phones while walking at the Canary Wharf business district in London February 26, 2014. REUTERS/Eddie Keogh

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April 14 (Reuters) - Hays Plc (HAYS.L) warned of a one-time hit of about 5 million pounds ($6.57 million) on Thursday for costs related to closing its Russian operations, after the British recruitment agency reported a record quarter on strong hiring across its markets.

"While we are mindful of increased macroeconomic and geopolitical uncertainties, client and candidate confidence remains strong, with continued skill shortages and rising wage inflation globally," Chief Executive Officer Alistair Cox said in a statement.

The London-based company, which is largely focused on hiring for white-collar roles, reported a 32% rise in net fees for the three months to March 31.

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The recruitment industry globally has witnessed a boom, since economies began to reopen from coronavirus-induced lockdowns as companies moved to fill empty positions, creating a highly competitive job market.

Hays, London's biggest publicly listed recruiter, also reiterated its full-year operating profit estimates given in February to be between 210 million pounds and 215 million pounds, up from 200 million pounds it forecast in January. read more

The results were in line with quarterly profits of smaller rivals PageGroup (PAGE.L) and Robert Walters (RWA.L).

In early March, Hays decided to close its offices in Moscow and St Petersburg and cease all its business activity and exit Russia, following the country's invasion of Ukraine.

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Reporting by Amna Karimi in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich

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