Asia boosts Michael Page

Growing demand in Asia and Latin America saw the recruitment specialist Michael Page increase its interim profit by 42 per cent to £61.4m, even though placements in the UK were flat compared with a year ago.

The company, which finds jobs for financial, accounting and legal staff, said 70 per cent of its first-half gross profit was generated outside Britain and more than 50 per cent was derived from non-financial and accounting sectors such as healthcare, mining and business support services.

The chief executive, Steve Ingham, said growth was also driven by improved "churn" in permanent jobs, with more people feeling confident enough to quit and take on new posts, creating more vacancies.

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