The world's largest temporary employment group, Adecco, reports higher first-half operating income but slower sales growth due to weaker economic conditions in the United States and Europe.
The Lausanne-based company said its operating income for the first six months of the year increased 21 per cent to SFr617 million ($358 million).
Sales were up 15 per cent to SFr13.8 billion compared with an increase of 37 per cent in the first quarter. Although revenue growth slowed, the figures were better than the markets had expected.
Sales were up 15 per cent in Europe against more than 27 per cent in the first quarter and 12 per cent in North America versus 42 per cent in the first three months.
In a statement, Adecco's CEO, John Bowmer, said the group was well positioned for the eventual upswing.
"Our results show undeniable strength in light of the current global economic landscape," said Bowmer.
"We continued to build capacity to enable a swift response when the economic upturn takes place."
Bowmer added that branch capacity increased by 10 per cent by the end of June.
The markets reacted warmly to Thursday's report, with Adecco shares gaining in a generally depressed atmosphere.
Swissinfo with agencies