Hiring cut back due to Brexit

International companies are cutting back on hiring and senior staff are reluctant to switch jobs because of uncertainty over Brexit, said British recruitment firm PageGroup.

Companies in Britain were filling vacant positions and roles created by restructuring, but were holding back on creating new jobs or setting aside budgets for expansion, CEO Steve Ingham said.

“The reality is uncertainty does not breed confidence to move your career from one company to another or commit to hiring people when you’re running a business,” he told Reuters. Its shares slid as much as 9%.

Hiring for technical roles in engineering, supply chain, logistics, property, and construction were doing better than for areas such as human resources and legal.

PageGroup, which mainly finds candidates to fill permanent positions, reported a 7.6% fall in UK gross profit to £34.9m (€39m) for the three months to the end of September. That was a sharper fall than the 4.5% it reported a quarter earlier.

PageGroup, which generates about a fifth of its gross profit in Britain, said in July weakness in Britain could last two years. The British group said it remained on course to meet full-year expectations for operating profit which it pegged at about £113m. It had reported operating profit of £101m in 2016. But analysts said the outlook was disappointing after fellow recruiter Robert Walters raised its full-year pretax profit forecast for a second time.

Many financial firms have said they will move some British jobs to continental Europe to keep serving clients in the single market.

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