(Reuters) - Recruiter Robert Walters Plc (RWA.L) warned of a slowdown in hiring as Britain prepares to leave the European Union and said some banking jobs were moving from London to other parts of Europe.
The company, which places people in finance, engineering, legal and marketing jobs, said net fee income from the UK rose 2 percent for the three months ended Dec. 31, compared to a 22 percent jump in Europe, where it had record performances in Belgium and France.
“UK is not going to be a great story ... whether you are Jaguar or supermarkets. In recruitment, it’s the uncertainty. I think once the political landscape becomes clearer, we’ll see a bounce back,” Chief Executive Officer and company founder Robert Walters told Reuters.
Britain’s biggest carmaker Jaguar Land Rover (TAMO.NS) is expected to announce thousands of job cuts, Reuters reported on Thursday, citing sources.
Walters’ comments were in contrast to what he had said in October, when companies were not moving jobs out of the country.
“In terms of are we seeing any particular movement in some banking functions into Europe, a little bit,” Walters said on Thursday. He said the jobs were likely to move to Dublin or Frankfurt.
A survey of recruitment consultants showed on Wednesday that permanent staff in UK were being hired at the slowest rate since April 2017, adding to concerns that the economy was slowing ahead of Brexit.
GRAPHIC: UK recruiters feel Brexit pinch - tmsnrt.rs/2RJgoaU
“I’m afraid this is in the hands of politicians and it’s in the hands of ... Trump with the trade wars, and everybody from Juncker to May in Europe,” Walters said when asked about the outlook for hiring in 2019.
It reported a 13 percent rise in total net fee income to 102.3 million pounds in the final quarter of the year, boosted by hiring in Asia Pacific and Europe.
Reporting by Sangameswaran S and Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta/Keith Weir