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Robert Half International Is Cashing in on Growth in Temporary Staffing

Barron’s (01/07/12) Doherty, Jacqueline

Robert Half International is rebounding from its 2009 low and, over the next few years, is positioned to increase revenue and earnings beyond their 2007 cyclical peak. The staffing firm is expected to boost revenue by 10% in each of the next three years, while raising operating margins to 12%, up from a current 7%, and producing $2.70 a share of earnings, according to Quoc Tran, a portfolio manager at Lateef Investment Management, the company’s largest shareholder.

In last year’s first three quarters, Robert Half’s Accountemps division contributed 37% of revenue, and Robert Half Finance and Accounting, which offers permanent-placement services in the accounting, financial, tax and banking areas, contributed 8%. “Our mid-market client base for the most part doesn’t have a [human-resources] capability. They’re outsourcing that to us,” says Keith Waddell, the company’s president and CFO.