StockMarketWire.com - Recruitment company Robert Walters warned of a flat annual profit, as it posted a 4% rise in third-quarter net fee income.

Net fee income for the three months through September rose to £105.6m, up from £101.2m on-year. On a constant currency basis, the growth rate was a more modest 2%.

Growth in Europe, Asia Pacific and the other international divisions of 9%, 3% and 12%, respectively, offset an 11% fall in the UK.

Pre-tax profit for the full year through March was now expected to be in line on-year.

Chief executive Robert Walters said trading conditions had softened across a number of markets.

'The ongoing uncertainty surrounding Brexit, the US-China trade tariff standoff and Hong Kong protests, coupled with the significant impact of the gilets-jaunes protests experienced earlier this year have combined to create a unique set of cumulative headwinds,' he said.

'Whilst visibility is limited, the group's international footprint and diverse blend of revenue streams covering permanent, contract, interim and recruitment process outsourcing ensures we are well positioned to respond to any market opportunities as and when they arise whilst also having the agility to closely manage our cost base.'

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