SThree has issued a Q3 trading update, the highlights of which are given below.
- Group gross profit ('GP') down 2% YoY and ahead by 2% excluding Energy
- Robust growth across ICT (+8% YoY) and Engineering (+9% YoY)
- Strong growth in Continental Europe (+12%* YoY)
- USA GP up 14% sequentially vs Q2, but down 10% YoY (down 3% excluding Energy), reflecting tough trading conditions in Energy and Banking & Finance and strong prior year comparatives
- UK market impacted by slowdown in Banking & Finance sector and EU referendum - GP down by 9% YoY
- Conditions in the Energy market remain challenging - GP down 32%* YoY
- Contract GP up 6% YoY and ahead by 9% excluding Energy
- Permanent GP down 15% YoY, broadly in line with average sales headcount down 12%. Permanent GP excluding Energy down 9% YoY
- 76% of Gross Profit generated from markets outside of the UK & Ireland (2015: 72%).
- Group period-end sales headcount down 7% on the 2015 year-end position and down 3% YoY
- Management's expectations for the full year outcome are unchanged