Deutsche Bank Lowers TMP Worldwide to 'Hold'

Analyst Jeetil Patel now thinks the employment market will recover in late 2003 at the earliest

Deutsche Bank downgraded TMP Worldwide (TMPW ) to hold from buy.

Analyst Jeetil Patel says he based his downgrade on TMP's limited near-term visibility and uncertainty regarding the valuation of NewCo, which combines TMP's eResourcing and Executive Search business units into a new staffing firm. The transaction was completed in the first quarter of 2003. Patel says fourth quarter results were weak, and core revenue suggests that the overall recruitment market remains very challenging in the near term. While he has waited for a turnaround in business, he now thinks the employment market recovery will likely occur in late 2003 at the earliest.

Patel says it appears that visibility into the business remains extremely low. He notes TMP has not provided financial guidance. He now forecasts $956 million in 2003 revenue, and breakeven earnings.

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