Page last updated at 10:22 GMT, Monday, 17 August 2009 11:22 UK

Recruiter sees positive UK signs

city workers
Firms hit by the recession have cut back on recruitment

Recruitment company Michael Page has said its business in the UK is showing signs of stabilising, despite reporting a sharp fall in profits and revenues.

Chief executive Steve Ingham told Reuters confidence had improved and more people were willing to move jobs.

However, the firm's half-year profits fell to £43.2m, down 49% on last year, with revenues down 27% to £364.7m.

The firm has cut 1,241 posts since the start of the year, taking its workforce to 3,702 by June.

Trading still 'challenging'

"In the UK we made roughly the same gross profit in the second quarter as we did in the first quarter, which is obviously a sign of stabilisation," Mr Ingham told Reuters.

"It's too early to call the end of the recession, but confidence has improved, and people seem to want to move jobs more now than they did before."

However, the company said that it was still anticipating "a challenging third quarter".

Recruitment firms have been suffering during the downturn, with companies reluctant to hire and workers less likely to move jobs.

"Market conditions remain weak and we are experiencing similar behaviour from our clients, candidates and competitors as we witnessed in previous economic slowdowns," Michael Page added

Launched in 1976, the firm operates in 28 countries worldwide.

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