Economic uncertainty fuels Manpower
The employment company sees a good quarter as demand for temp workers continues to grow.
Enter the temp worker. Manpower shares are up 5% today after the company beat Wall Street estimates for its third quarter.
"We knew we had good momentum going into the quarter. We just weren't quite sure if we were able to sustain it or not," chief executive Jeffrey Joerres said in a conference call with analysts. As it turned out, Manpower was able to squeak out slightly faster growth.
The company reported $51.3 million in profit, or 62 cents a share, for the quarter. That's up from a $52.8 million loss, or 67 cents a share, from a year ago. Wall Street had been expecting 52 cents a share.
The revenue picture was similarly bright, growing 19% from the year-ago period to $5 billion.
Manpower's earnings are watched closely as an indicator of the U.S. job market, even though most of its business is done outside of the country. The company said it saw strong revenue growth in the U.S., Canada and Mexico as well as in parts of Europe.
As the third quarter unfolded, Manpower still received mixed messages throughout the global economy, Joerres said. But business did well as a result of slow but steady demand, economic uncertainty and a will to allow more flexibility in the labor force.
In the U.S., companies could have shut down hiring after the Labor Day holiday, preferring to keep costs low for the rest of the year. But that didn't happen, Joerres said, and the fact that companies sought growth after Labor Day was a good indicator.
The fourth quarter should also be solid, Joerres said. The company expects a profit of between 54 and 62 cents a share, though restructuring charges could run as high as 20 cents a share.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market ended the Thursday session on a mixed note ahead of Friday's nonfarm payrolls report for February (Briefing.com consensus 163K). The Dow Jones Industrial Average (+0.4%) and S&P 500 (+0.2%) posted modest gains while the Nasdaq Composite (-0.1%) lagged throughout the session.
Equities began the trading day on an upbeat note following comments from the Bank of England and the European Central Bank, both of which reaffirmed their commitment to ... More
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