UPDATE 1-Manpower outlook brightens as hiring picks up in Europe

Monday, 21 Oct 2013 | 8:54 AM ET

Oct 21 (Reuters) - ManpowerGroup Inc, the world's No.3 staffing company, reported a 50 percent jump in quarterly profit due to cost-cutting and improved hiring trends in Europe, and forecast current-quarter profit above analysts' expectations.

Manpower shares rose 5 percent before the bell on Monday.

Switzerland's Adecco and Netherlands-based Randstad, the world's top two staffing companies, were also upbeat about their European businesses in the last quarter.

The euro-zone debt crisis has been a drag on results of most staffing firms. Manpower, which gets about two-thirds of its revenue from Europe, has shut offices in the region to cut costs as businesses held back hiring.

"Our European operations' revenue experienced slow but steadily improving trends throughout the quarter," Chief Executive Jeffrey Joerres said in a statement on Monday.

Manpower said it expects a profit of between $1.18 and $1.26 per share in the fourth quarter, topping the average analyst estimate of $1.16 per share.

The company's revenue rose for the first time in six quarters to $5.19 billion in the third quarter, edging past the consensus estimate of $5.10 billion.

Net income rose to $94.7 million, or $1.18 per share, from $63.1 million, or 79 cents per share, a year earlier.

The results include a restructuring charge of $8.1 million, related to office consolidations and severance costs.

Excluding items, Manpower earned $1.26 per share. Analysts on average expected earnings of $1.09 per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Manpower shares were trading at $82.62 in premarket trading after closing at $79.31 on the New York Stock Exchange on Friday.