Shares of Korn/Ferry International (KFY) hit a 52-week high of $30.31 and eventually closed at $30.07 on Mar 21 driven by strong third quarter fiscal 2014 results reported on Mar 6. In fact, shares of this staffing firm have risen 16.4% since it reported third quarter results. Average volume of shares traded over the last three months came in at approximately 569K.
Korn/Ferry reported better-than-expected third quarter fiscal 2014 numbers. In fact, this Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) company has reported better-than-expected earnings for the last eight quarters. Despite an underperforming economy, Korn/Ferry has emerged as a winner and constantly helps empower businesses and business leaders to reach their goals.
Adjusted earnings of 43 cents exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 26.5% and surged 38.7% year over year owing to strong fee revenues and solid margin expansion. Korn/Ferry's sales increased 18.9% year over year to $250.1 million and also beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $232 million by 7.8% riding on a 21% year-over-year increase in fee revenues. Despite the holiday seasonality, the company achieved solid revenues, signaling rising global demand for industry-leading talent management solutions.
Excluding the prior-year acquisitions, fee revenues increased 14% on a constant currency basis on the back of an increase in clients and sourcing leadership and expansion of talent consulting services. The overall fee revenue increase was driven by growth in all the segments - Executive Recruitment, Leadership & Talent Consulting and Futurestep. Additionally, in the third quarter, the company’s overall growth outpaced many of its industry peers.
The company’s operating margin climbed 330 basis points to 11.0% in the third quarter of fiscal 2014 owing to higher sales offsetting higher operating expenses.
Like Korn/Ferry, another staffing firm Robert Half International Inc. (RHI) also reported better-than-expected fourth quarter 2013 results on Jan 31, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate on both earnings and revenues despite macroeconomic headwinds. Staffing firm On Assignment Inc. (ASGN) also reported better-than-expected earnings in fourth quarter 2013 but revenues lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate.
Other Stock to Consider
Another staffing firm worth considering in the sector is ManpowerGroup, Inc. (MAN), which holds a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).