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Three Quick Facts: Robert Walters, Hays, B&M


Three things you need to know in the financial markets today from investment writer, Tony Cross.

#1. Recruiter Robert Walters reports low client and candidate confidence

Recruiter Robert Walters [LON:RWA] published its Q1 trading update this morning. Gross profits are down by 21% from a year ago, with all territories showing similar levels of slowing on a constant currency basis. The sluggish momentum from last year has been carried into 2024, with management noting that client and candidate confidence remains low, a theme that is set to continue in the medium term. Cost control remains front of mind and the company has net cash of £54m, but this note feels even more downbeat than the update provided by PageGroup yesterday.

#2. Hays finds limited respite in temp recruiting market

Hays [LON:HAS] also provided a quarterly update, mirroring the performance of its peers with net fees down 14%. Perhaps unsurprisingly, temporary recruitment fared better than permanent, but with clients employing contractors to work shorter hours, that also served to drag on performance. The company is focused on cost savings and again the underlying theme appears to be one of headwinds persisting for some time yet.

#3. New store openings help B&M drive growth

Discount retailer B&M [LON:BME] has a short, full year trading statement out today, with upbeat numbers arguably reflecting the ongoing cost of living challenge. Group revenues added 10%, supported by new store openings, with FY EBITDA expected to come in at the top end of the previously supplied guidance range.

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This article does not constitute investment advice. Make sure you do your own research or consult a professional advisor.

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