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29 Aug 2019 | 07:59

Hays announces special divi; profits slide 3% on weakening macroeconomic conditions

Recruitment consultant Hays announced a special dividend after reporting a slight fall in profit as weaker macroeconomic conditions in many markets kept a lid on net fees growth. For the 12 months ended 30 June, pre-tax profit fell 3% to $231.2m, and net fees grew 5% to £1.1bn. Germany, the company's biggest market, generated net fees of 6% even as the economic slowdown weighed. In the UK & Ireland, net fees were up 2%, with operating profit up 4% on strong cost control. International growth helped bolster performance, with the Rest of World generating 8% net fees growth. The company proposed to increase its full-year core dividend by 4%, in line with earnings, to 3.97p per share and deliver a special dividend of £79.7m, up 9% to 5.43p per share. 'Looking ahead, despite an increasingly tough global economic backdrop, our market positions, combined with our highly experienced global management teams and strong financial position, means I am confident we will continue to appropriately balance our long-term potential with the more challenging markets we currently face,' said Alistair Cox, Chief Executive.

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