Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom Hays PLC https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom Hays PLC RSS feed en Sun, 26 May 2019 09:03:59 +0100 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss Genera CMS action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) <![CDATA[News - RBC moves Hays to ‘outperform’, says recent weakness represents ‘good buying opportunity’ ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/220597/rbc-moves-hays-to-outperform-says-recent-weakness-represents-good-buying-opportunity-220597.html Hays PLC (LON:HAS) edged higher on Monday as the recruiter was lifted up to ‘outperform’ by analysts at RBC Capital, who think now is the time to buy in after a recent sell-off.

The FTSE 250-listed firm's shares are off almost 10% over the past weeks, and RBC estimates that the stock has underperformed its rivals by around 15% so far this year.

READ: Hays reports slowdown in gross profit despite benefit of late Easter

RBC reckons this reflects “tough trading” in some of Hays’ key markets, namely the UK, Germany and Australia.

Fewer hires in Germany’s huge automotive industry has knocked performance there, Brexit uncertainty is still affecting UK companies’ hiring decisions, and the Australian market has slowed ahead of elections.

“However, Hays continues to have very strong businesses in all three markets,” said analysts in a note to clients.

“We see potential for continued structural growth in Germany and a Brexit rebound at some point in the UK. At the group level, growth comparatives start to get easier from Q119 onwards (Q418 growth was 15% vs Q319 at 5%).”

RBC loves what bosses are doing

They added that Hays is an “extremely well-run business” and praised management’s plan to increase exposure to technical specialisms, invest in technology and focus on cash conversion.

“[These] are exactly the right focus areas for a staffing business,” RBC said.

The chin scratchers also point to the potential for £100mln of special dividends over the next few years, which would give Hays a potential yield of around 8%.

They concluded: “Whilst we are cognisant of uncertainty over key markets, we believe the recent weakness presents a good buying opportunity into a quality operator.

“Valuation is undemanding and the balance sheet and dividend yield potential are supportive. We move to ‘outperform’, maintaining our mid-cycle discounted cash flow target price of 175p.”

Hays shares were up 0.6% to 150p on Monday morning.

]]>
Mon, 20 May 2019 11:25:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/220597/rbc-moves-hays-to-outperform-says-recent-weakness-represents-good-buying-opportunity-220597.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Director Declaration ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190520083001_14079841/ Mon, 20 May 2019 08:30:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190520083001_14079841/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Change of Registered Office ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190507100003_14064561/ Tue, 07 May 2019 10:00:03 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190507100003_14064561/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190501100001_14059126/ Wed, 01 May 2019 10:00:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190501100001_14059126/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190426155408_14054202/ Fri, 26 Apr 2019 15:54:08 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190426155408_14054202/ <![CDATA[News - Hays reports slowdown in gross profit growth despite benefit of later Easter ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/218647/hays-reports-slowdown-in-gross-profit-growth-despite-benefit-of-later-easter-218647.html Hays PLC (LON:HAS) reported a slowdown in gross profit growth for the third quarter, blaming tough comparatives in its German, Australian and New Zealand job markets.

The recruitment firm said net fees – a measure of gross profit – rose 6% on a like-for-like basis in the quarter ended March 31, compared to a 9% increase in the second quarter.

The slowdown came despite Easter falling later in the year, contributing 1% to growth.

READ: Hays shares hit by fears of German slowdown despite first half profit growth

Like-for-like net fees in the Australian and New Zealand division, which accounts for 17% of the total, edged up 3% in the third quarter after an 8% rise in the previous quarter due to difficult comparatives and a tough construction and property market.

Australia delivered a 3% rise in net fees but New Zealand dropped 8%.

Germany hit by challenging macro-economic backdrop

The group’s largest market of Germany, which represents 27% of total net fees, saw like-for-like net fees increase 6% after a 15% jump in the second quarter, due to tough comparatives and a challenging macro-economic backdrop.

The UK and Ireland arm delivered a 3% increase in net fees, making up 23% of the total and largely in line with the last quarter, led by IT job placements.

The rest of the world business posted a 9% gain in like-for-like net fees, representing 33% of the total, after a 10% increase in the second quarter.

By segments, IT was the strongest performer across its different markets.

The company’s net fees are generated 58% from temporary and 42% permanent job placements.

“While we remain mindful of macroeconomic conditions, the outlook remains positive across most of our markets,” said chief executive Alistair Cox.

Shares fell 3.8% to 156p in morning trading. 

RBC Capital Markets prefers PageGroup

RBC Capital Markets maintained a 'sector perform' rating and target price of 210p.

The broker said it does not expect material changes to consensus forecasts today but noted that the German run–rate is weaker than expected and comes on the back of significant investment in that area.

"In addition, we would point to a slowing Australian market, with the slowing job ads data a concerning lead indicator," it said. 

"That said, valuation is undemanding and we think the stock is yielding close to 7%, including specials for 2019.

"However, we continue to prefer PageGroup given its higher growth, greater gearing to perms and potential for higher operational leverage and Adecoo or Rand Group for cheaper valuations and easier comparatives."

]]>
Tue, 16 Apr 2019 07:39:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/218647/hays-reports-slowdown-in-gross-profit-growth-despite-benefit-of-later-easter-218647.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Third Quarter Trading Update ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190416070012_14042066/ Tue, 16 Apr 2019 07:00:12 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190416070012_14042066/ <![CDATA[News - Hays weak as Morgan Stanley cuts its rating to ‘equal-weight’ from ‘overweight’ on lack of near-term catalysts ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/218232/hays-weak-as-morgan-stanley-cuts-its-rating-to-equal-weight-from-overweight-on-lack-of-near-term-catalysts-218232.html Morgan Stanley gave a knock to Hays PLC (LON:HAS) on Tuesday, downgrading its rating for the staffing group to ‘equal-weight’ from ‘overweight’ ahead of a third-quarter trading update next week, pointing to a lack of near-term catalysts.

The US investment bank also chopped its target price for the FTSE 250-listed firm down to 185p from 200p, with the shares currently trading at 149.90p, off 1.8% from Monday’s close.

READ: Hays shares hit by fears of German slowdown despite first-half profit growth

In a note to clients, Morgan Stanley’s analysts noted that with its half-year results in February, Hays flagged a lower level of contractor extensions in its biggest market Germany, which will modestly reduce their overall growth rate.

They pointed out that, in their view, with slowing growth in Germany and in Australia – which together account for around 65% of the company’s operating profit – the stock will struggle to outperform near-term.

The analysts said they would need to see an inflection in growth momentum or higher visibility in at least one of those markets before taking a more positive view on the business again.

]]>
Tue, 09 Apr 2019 10:58:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/218232/hays-weak-as-morgan-stanley-cuts-its-rating-to-equal-weight-from-overweight-on-lack-of-near-term-catalysts-218232.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190401100001_14023249/ Mon, 01 Apr 2019 10:00:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190401100001_14023249/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190328102154_14019466/ Thu, 28 Mar 2019 10:21:54 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190328102154_14019466/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190313150808_14001177/ Wed, 13 Mar 2019 15:08:08 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190313150808_14001177/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190312120507_13999233/ Tue, 12 Mar 2019 12:05:07 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190312120507_13999233/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190301100002_13987150/ Fri, 01 Mar 2019 10:00:02 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190301100002_13987150/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director Declaration ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190227152248_13984110/ Wed, 27 Feb 2019 15:22:48 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190227152248_13984110/ <![CDATA[News - Hays shares hit by fears of German slowdown despite first half profit growth ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/215031/hays-shares-hit-by-fears-of-german-slowdown-despite-first-half-profit-growth-215031.html Hays PLC (LON:HAS) reported increased profits and revenues for the first half of its fiscal year, however, shares sank in early deals amid signs of a slowdown in its key market, Germany.

Despite pre-tax profit rising 8% to £122.6mln and net fees jumping 8% to £568mln on a like-for-like (LFL) basis for the six months to 31 December, investors were spooked by the pace of growth in Germany, which accounts for nearly 40% of the FTSE 250 recruiters operating profit.

READ: Hays delivers 'good quarter' but remains cautious amid Brexit uncertainty

In the half-year, net fees in Germany grew 14% on an LFL basis, slower than the 17% rate in the year-ago period.

This was compounded by comments from the firm around the impact of foreign exchange rate on its earnings, with fluctuations of its key operating currencies versus sterling continuing to represent a “reduction” to its performance.

Hays added that over the six month period, currency movements had taken around £2.1mln off its operating profit and represented a “significant sensitivity” for the business.

Shares took a knock soon after the release of the results, falling 5% to 150.4p.

Broker expects German slowdown and forex to dent full-year forecasts

In a note to clients, analysts at broker Liberum said the slowdown in German growth and the impact of currency movement were expected to result in a consensus for the 2019 fiscal year to be “trimmed” by 2%-3%.

“Although not massive in the context of the recent share price performance [which has fallen around 26% in the last six months], we expect investors to pay particular attention to the outlook for the group's largest region,” the broker said.

Interim dividend hiked

Regarding the rest of the interims, Liberum said the results were in line with forecasts, with Hays upping its interim dividend by 5% to 1.11p.

The company’s conversion rate (the changing of net fees into operating profit), had also risen to 22.2% from 21.5%.

Alistair Cox, chief executive, said that the firm had delivered a “good first half” despite “increasingly tough comparatives”.

"Looking ahead, although we remain mindful of continuing macroeconomic uncertainty, the outlook in the vast majority of our markets remains positive. Our second half focus will be on driving consultant productivity, while selectively investing in our key markets to build on our existing scale, balance and diversity.”

]]>
Thu, 21 Feb 2019 09:20:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/215031/hays-shares-hit-by-fears-of-german-slowdown-despite-first-half-profit-growth-215031.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Half-year Report ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190221070004_13976436/ Thu, 21 Feb 2019 07:00:04 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190221070004_13976436/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Directorate Change ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190220083001_13975388/ Wed, 20 Feb 2019 08:30:01 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190220083001_13975388/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Block listing Interim Review ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190213153049_13968490/ Wed, 13 Feb 2019 15:30:49 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190213153049_13968490/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Notice of Half Year Results ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190207101735_13961783/ Thu, 07 Feb 2019 10:17:35 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190207101735_13961783/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Holding(s) in Company ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190201115826_13955613/ Fri, 01 Feb 2019 11:58:26 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190201115826_13955613/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190201100001_13955257/ Fri, 01 Feb 2019 10:00:01 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190201100001_13955257/ <![CDATA[News - Hays delivers 'good quarter' but remains cautious amid Brexit uncertainty ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/212571/hays-delivers--good-quarter--but-remains-cautious-amid-brexit-uncertainty-212571.html Recruitment firm Hays PLC (LON:HAS) said it delivered a good second quarter of gross profit growth but remains “mindful” of the uncertainty facing the UK economy as Brexit looms.

In the quarter ended 31 December 2018, net fees – a measure of recruiters’ gross profit – increased 9% on a like-for-like basis, in line with the previous quarter’s growth.

READ: Hays shares drop as first quarter gross profit misses analysts' expectations

The UK and Ireland division achieved a 3% rise in like-for-like net fees despite weaker business confidence in the region, led by a strong performance in its public sector business. 

Germany, the company’s largest market, was the biggest driver of growth with a 15% gain in like-for-like net fees. There were two extra business days in Germany than a year ago due to the timing of public holidays, which gave net fees a boost.

Like-for-like net fees in Australia and New Zealand edged up 8% while the rest of the world grew 10%, supported by a record performance in China.

Looking ahead, chief executive Alistair Cox said: “While activity levels at the start of the New Year will be an important driver of the group's second half performance, and we remain mindful of macroeconomic conditions, the outlook is good across most international markets.

“We continue to invest in key structural growth markets like Germany, the USA and Asia, capitalising on the clear opportunities we are seeing.

 “Our diverse and balanced global business, together with our highly experienced management teams, mean we look to the future with confidence."

Hays had net cash of £30mln at the end of the period after paying final and special dividends, compared to £80mln in September and £34.5mln a year ago. 

]]>
Tue, 15 Jan 2019 08:08:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/212571/hays-delivers--good-quarter--but-remains-cautious-amid-brexit-uncertainty-212571.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Second Quarter Trading Update ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190115070005_13934344/ Tue, 15 Jan 2019 07:00:05 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190115070005_13934344/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Notice of Second Quarter Trading Update ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190103090003_13922601/ Thu, 03 Jan 2019 09:00:03 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190103090003_13922601/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190102100003_13920725/ Wed, 02 Jan 2019 10:00:03 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20190102100003_13920725/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181210145056_13898024/ Mon, 10 Dec 2018 14:50:56 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181210145056_13898024/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181205103254_13892418/ Wed, 05 Dec 2018 10:32:54 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181205103254_13892418/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181203103438_13888802/ Mon, 03 Dec 2018 10:34:38 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181203103438_13888802/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181203100002_13888739/ Mon, 03 Dec 2018 10:00:02 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181203100002_13888739/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Directorate Change ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181115091258_13868161/ Thu, 15 Nov 2018 09:12:58 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181115091258_13868161/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Result of AGM ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181114151704_13867218/ Wed, 14 Nov 2018 15:17:04 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181114151704_13867218/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181101140517_13851854/ Thu, 01 Nov 2018 14:05:17 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181101140517_13851854/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181101100001_13851164/ Thu, 01 Nov 2018 10:00:01 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181101100001_13851164/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181011103728_13825143/ Thu, 11 Oct 2018 10:37:28 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181011103728_13825143/ <![CDATA[News - Hays shares drop as first quarter gross profit misses analysts' expectations ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/206872/hays-shares-drop-as-first-quarter-gross-profit-misses-analysts-expectations-206872.html Hays PLC (LON:HAS) shares dropped on Thursday after the recruitment firm posted weaker-than-expected first quarter gross profit growth.

The company said net fee income, a measure of recruiters’ gross profit, rose 9% on a like-for-like (LFL) basis, 2 percentage points below the market consensus forecast.

LFL net fees in the UK and Ireland business increased 3%, marking a slowdown from the 5% gain reported in the previous quarter amid weaker business confidence due to Brexit uncertainty.

The growth in UK and Ireland unit,  which accounts for 24% of the group’s net fees, was led by public sector job placements as a result of easier comparatives following the negative impact of IR35 reforms in April 2017 that shift the responsibility from the contractor to the public sector client or hirer.

READ: Hays hikes final and special dividends as international markets drive profit growth

The Australia and New Zealand division also saw growth in LFL net fees ease back with a 7% rise, compared to a 14% increase in the fourth quarter, due to tough comparatives. The unit represents 18% of total net fees. Hays said the division was boosted by favourable market conditions and growth in IT.

Germany, which makes up 27% of net fees, generated a 13% rise in LFL net fees, down from final quarter’s 16% rate of growth, driven by strong demand for IT, engineering, accountancy and finance roles.

The Rest of the World arm – the company’s biggest division, accounting for 31% of net fees – posted a 14% rise in LFL net fees, bolstered by growth in France, Spain, Asia and the Americas. That compared to a 23% increase in LFL net fees in the fourth quarter.  

“Looking ahead, while we are mindful of macroeconomic conditions, the outlook remains positive across our International markets,” said chief executive Alistair Cox.

“We are continuing to invest in our key structural growth markets, notably Germany, France, the USA and Asia to capitalise on the many opportunities we currently see.

"We remain focused on driving profitable, cash-generative growth and leveraging our platform, which is the largest and most balanced in our industry. This means we can look to the future with confidence."

Shares fell 12.1% to 154p in morning trading. 

]]>
Thu, 11 Oct 2018 08:45:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/206872/hays-shares-drop-as-first-quarter-gross-profit-misses-analysts-expectations-206872.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - First Quarter Trading Update ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181011070006_13824299/ Thu, 11 Oct 2018 07:00:06 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181011070006_13824299/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Annual Financial Report and AGM Notice ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181003162607_13815497/ Wed, 03 Oct 2018 16:26:07 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181003162607_13815497/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181001100001_13810902/ Mon, 01 Oct 2018 10:00:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20181001100001_13810902/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Notice of First Quarter Trading Update ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180928083243_13808582/ Fri, 28 Sep 2018 08:32:43 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180928083243_13808582/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180914112032_13791521/ Fri, 14 Sep 2018 11:20:32 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180914112032_13791521/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180912134512_13788442/ Wed, 12 Sep 2018 13:45:12 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180912134512_13788442/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180912110752_13788141/ Wed, 12 Sep 2018 11:07:52 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180912110752_13788141/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180910151748_13785215/ Mon, 10 Sep 2018 15:17:48 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180910151748_13785215/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180910151436_13785210/ Mon, 10 Sep 2018 15:14:36 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180910151436_13785210/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180907122025_13783297/ Fri, 07 Sep 2018 12:20:25 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180907122025_13783297/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180906141349_13781769/ Thu, 06 Sep 2018 14:13:49 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180906141349_13781769/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180904125528_13778385/ Tue, 04 Sep 2018 12:55:28 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180904125528_13778385/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180903100001_13776296/ Mon, 03 Sep 2018 10:00:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180903100001_13776296/ <![CDATA[News - Hays hikes final and special dividends as international markets drive profit growth ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/203863/hays-hikes-final-and-special-dividends-as-international-markets-drive-profit-growth-203863.html Recruitment firm achieved Hays PLC (LON:HAS) hiked its ordinary and special dividends by 18% as it delivered growth in annual gross profit across all its markets despite weaker business confidence in the UK.

Net fees – a measure of recruiters’ gross profit – rose to £1.07bn in the year to June 30 from £954.6bn a year ago, driven by a strong performance in international businesses.

READ: Hays expects annual profits to beat market forecasts after record final quarter

Brexit uncertainty has seen UK employers take a more cautious approach to hiring but Hays still achieved a like-for-like gain of 2% in net fees as rises in private sector job placements in IT, construction, property and office support offset a decline in public sector placements such as education.

Hays said the UK market remained "uncertain but stable overall".

Germany continued to be the star performer for Hays, with record like-for-like net fee growth of 16%. The Australia and New Zealand division saw net fees rise 14% on a like-for-like basis while the rest of the world unit posted a 17% increase.

The group’s profit before tax edged up 17% to £238.5mln from £204.6mln last year.

Hays raised its core dividend per share to 3.81p from 3.22p and lifted its special dividend to 5.0p per share from 4.25p as it ended the year with net cash of £122.9mln, up from £111.6mln last year.

Hays invests in key growth markets

Looking ahead, chief executive Alistair Cox said conditions remain positive in “virtually all of our markets”.

"We are investing significantly in key growth markets where we see structural and market share opportunities, notably Germany, France and the USA," he said.

"We continue to build on our scale and diversity and are focused on driving profitable, cash-generative growth. The sheer scale and diversity of our global platform combined with our highly experienced management teams means we are well-positioned to capitalise on the growth opportunities identified in our 2022 plan." 

But shares fell 4.7% to 193.3p in morning trading amid concerns about the UK jobs market. 

Brexit uncertainty 

Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at Markets.com, said: "The question hanging over the UK business is just what happens to the economy and the recruitment market after Brexit with a potential loss of supply as well as demand, as well as whether any business uncertainty that delays investment starts to feed through over the coming years to hiring and contract work, particularly around govt contracts. But for now things are looking solid enough."

]]>
Thu, 30 Aug 2018 08:32:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/203863/hays-hikes-final-and-special-dividends-as-international-markets-drive-profit-growth-203863.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Final Results ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180830070005_13772228/ Thu, 30 Aug 2018 07:00:05 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3293/LSE20180830070005_13772228/