Mr Bassat said the job listings site, which has international websites as well as a major Australian career portal, was offsetting locally difficult «macro» conditions with premium products allowing hirers to boost their advertisements and pay for additional services.
He said the business was «very solid and going strong» but the economy meant it was a «bit harder» than expected.
The Australia and New Zealand arm showed some of the strongest growth in the Seek group with an 11 per cent revenue jump and 13 per cent earnings growth. Revenue from Seek Asia increased 11 per cent with earnings up 10 per cent.
«In terms of the market itself, [there is] no doubt we’re seeing softness in volume,» he said, describing it as «softer than hoped».
«It won’t improve a lot before the election,» Mr Bassat said, explaining he expected to see «a degree of certainty» after the polls close. «The economy hasn’t helped us as much as it has in past years.»
The unemployment rate has held steady in NSW and Victoria at 5 per cent in January after jobs growth of 39,100 across the country was predominantly within these two major states, ABS data shows. Unemployment increased in Tasmania to 6.2 per cent and in Western Australia to 6.8, where it is now at a 17-year high.
The 2019 revenue guidance was reaffirmed at 16 to 20 per cent growth compared to the 2018 financial year, with earnings expected to rise between 5 per cent and 8 per cent.
Net profit is likely to be lower than 2018 due to more investment in early-stage ventures like Chinese recruitment services business Zhaopin and university partnership Online Education Services.
Seek is the 35th most shorted business on the ASX with 5.65 per cent of stocks held in a short position, according to monitoring website Shortman.