Why Robert Half International Stock Slumped Today

The company's results weren't good enough.

Timothy Green
Timothy Green
Oct 24, 2018 at 5:17PM
Consumer Goods

What happened

Shares of Robert Half International (NYSE:RHI), a staffing services company, dropped on Wednesday after a solid third-quarter report. A broad market sell-off likely exacerbated the decline. The stock was down 10.3% at market close.

So what

Robert Half reported third-quarter revenue of $1.47 billion, up 10.6% year over year and in line with the average analyst estimate. Revenue growth decelerated a bit from the second quarter, when sales jumped 11.5%.

In the press release announcing the results, CEO Harold Messmer Jr. said: "All of our staffing divisions and [global consulting firm] Protiviti reported solid year-over-year revenue gains in the third quarter. Our permanent-placement and Protiviti operations performed particularly well during the quarter." 

Earnings per share came in at $0.95, up from $0.68 in the prior-year period and $0.04 higher than analysts were expecting. Higher revenue and a lower tax rate contributed to the earnings growth.

A man with head on desk in front of slumping chart.

Image source: Getty Images.

Now what

Shares of Robert Half have soared since late 2017. The stock was recently up as much as 75% from a low carved out in August 2017, but it began tumbling this September. Still, even after today's decline, the stock remains up about 30% from that low.

While Robert Half's results were positive, investors may have been expecting more.