Shares in SThree plc (LON: STHR) have fallen by around 5% today after the staffing business released a rather mixed set of half-year results. SThree’s Contract division continued to perform well with a rise in gross profit of 11%, and the company’s ICT segment posted a rise in gross profit of 18%. But slowdowns in global banking as well as challenges in the energy sector and in the wider UK economy caused SThree’s overall growth rate to fall.
Pretax profit was down by 7% and while it believes it’s too early to assess the full effects of the EU referendum result, it feels that it’s well-placed to perform strongly. That’s largely because of its increasing exposure to the relatively resilient Contracts market (which makes up more than two-thirds of sales), as well as its geographic diversification.
Looking ahead, SThree is forecast to post a rise in earnings of just 1% this year, followed by a fall of 2% next year. And with Brexit having the scope to hurt its performance yet further, investors may wish to await a lower share price before buying-in.
Good time to buy?
Also reporting today was McBride (LSE: MCB). The private label personal care products specialist has risen by over 7% today after it said it expects adjusted operating profit to be slightly ahead of previous expectations. A key reason for this is the better-than-anticipated progress on cost saving initiatives, notably from the final-year impact of the UK business restructuring project. Furthermore, purchasing-driven savings have also contributed to the positive result.
Encouragingly, McBride said in today’s update that there has been no impact to date on its day-to-day operations from the EU referendum result. With 70% of McBride’s activities being outside the UK, it could benefit from weaker sterling, and with its bottom line forecast to rise by 23% this year and a further 21% next year, it seems set to perform well. Its shares could do the same as they trade on a price-to-earnings growth (PEG) ratio of just 0.6, which indicates that now is a good time to buy them.
On the up
Meanwhile, Amino Technologies (LSE: AMO) has released an upbeat set of interim results today. The digital entertainment solutions specialist recorded a rise in revenue of 84% versus the same period of the previous year. This has been aided by the successful integration of acquisitions Booxmedia and Entone, with a single enhanced portfolio now having been created.
Progress has also been made in Latin America as operators transition to IPTV deployments in response to deregulation. And with Amino’s position having been strengthened in North America and with improved sales pipeline visibility, it seems to be very much on the up.
With Amino trading on a PEG ratio of just 0.8, it seems to offer strong growth at a very reasonable price. Therefore, it may be worth a closer look for long-term investors.