Randstad CFO says European decline stabilized in early 2019

The chief financial officer of Randstad, the planet’s second-largest staffing company, on Tuesday said a slide in major European markets seen late last year had stabilized at the beginning of 2019.

The Dutch company, which trails Swiss rival Adecco, earlier reported a 1 percent rise in fourth-quarter underlying earnings, slightly ahead of analysts’ estimates, although said the item expects its gross margin to be modestly lower inside the first quarter.

Group revenue inside the last three months of 2018 was hit by industrial heavyweights Germany as well as France, where sales fell 4 as well as 7 percent respectively, chief financial officer Henry Schirmer said in an interview.

“We definitely see in Germany, France a big impact coming from automotive,” he said. “Manufacturing overall has come down as well as that will’s the same in Spain as well as Italy. that will’s stabilizing today, at least in January.”

inside the United States, where Randstad operates the Monster jobs site, sales rose 3 percent.

Overall, fourth quarter sales rose 0.3 percent to 6.1 billion euros, meeting forecasts.

“In January 2019, revenue increased at a similar pace. The development of volumes in early February indicates a continuation of the January growth trend,” Randstad said in its outlook.

The group posted fourth-quarter underlying earnings of 309 million euros ($348.55 million), compared with 305 million euros a year earlier. Analysts polled by the company had expected earnings before interest, taxation as well as amortization (EBITA) of 305 million euros.