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Hays Q2 LFL Net Fees Up 13% - Quick Facts

Hays plc (HAS.L) reported that its Group net fees for the second quarter ended 31 December 2017 increased 12% on a headline and 13% on a like-for-like basis against the prior year. The relative strength of Sterling versus the Australian dollar and our Asian currencies was partially offset by Euro strength against Sterling.

Alistair Cox, Chief Executive, said, "We have delivered another strong quarter of broad-based growth with net fees up 13% and 24 of our 33 countries delivering double-digit growth. Performance in Continental Europe was excellent, led by Germany, our largest business, which grew by 19% and where we continued to materially invest in consultant headcount. Australia delivered another strong, market-leading performance and in Asia we delivered excellent growth. In the UK our business remained stable overall.

Net fees in Perm business (42% fees) grew 15%, while Temp business (58% fees) grew by 11%.

Consultant headcount was up 3% in the quarter and 13% year-on-year as we continued to invest heavily in key growth markets. It expects headcount growth in the second-half of year to be more selective, as we focus on driving consultant productivity.

In Asia Pacific the company delivered another strong performance with 16% net fee growth.

In Australia & New Zealand net fees were up 14%, led by Perm business which accelerated to 17%. Temp, which represented 67% of net fees in the quarter, increased by 12%.

In the United Kingdom & Ireland business was stable and net fees increased by 1%. In the private sector, which represents 74% of divisional net fees,we grew by 4%. This is most evident in our Perm business, which was up 3%. Temp business was down 1% as it continued to be negatively impacted by tough market conditions in the public sector, as well as the annualised impact of IR35 regulations. Overall, public sector net fees fell by 8%.

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