Increased retention rate for Clifford Chance after revenue rise

Clifford Chance has revealed a newly qualified (NQ) retention rate of 82 per cent, an increase on last year.

It has kept on 54 of its 66 trainees in NQ positions. One trainee refused an offer; eleven were not offered an NQ position.

Both the firm’s revenue and profit per equity partner have increased by 7 per cent in the 2011-12 financial year. It has the highest global turnover of any magic circle firm and is topped only by DLA Piper.

It announced at the end of last year that it would be cutting its trainee intake for 2015 from 120 to 100. The firm said the decision reflected the number of lawyers it expected to need in the UK in the coming years.

The retention result follows a redundancy round for London associates in capital markets and banking earlier this year resulting from a low attrition rate among NQs (23 March 2012).

Last autumn the firm posted a 77 per cent retention rate. Of 62 trainees, 48 accepted NQ positions. While this time last year it revealed a retention rate of 76 per cent keeping just 39 of its 51 trainees.

Clifford Chance is the last magic circle firm to announce its retention rate. Linklaters posted a rate of 83 per cent yesterday (12 February 2013) while Freshfields announced an 85 per cent rate and Allen & Overy’s rate dipped to 70 per cent.