Ashurst, Wragges and White & Case reveal spring retention rates

Ashurst has confirmed that it will only be keeping on 67 per cent of its spring 2010 newly qualified (NQ) lawyers.

The top 20 law firm has announced that it has only managed to offer 14 of its NQs a job out of a cohort of 21. The result is much lower than the 86 per cent Ashurst managed in Spring 2009.

David Jones, partner and trainee principal, said: “Trainee retention rates fluctuate in accordance with many different factors including, of course, the market and the make up of each trainee intake. Our retention rate is slightly lower this time but we expect the rate to return to our normal high level in due course.”

But Ashurst’s result is nowhere near as bad as that of Denton Wilde Sapte, which recently emerged as the firm with one of the lowest NQ retention rates in the UK 200 so far.

The firm reported that it would be shedding 86 per cent of its spring 2010 qualifiers after it offered one of its NQs a job in the real estate department out of a cohort of 7, giving it a disappointing result of just 14 per cent.

Wragge & Co, meanwhile, has done better with a rate of 86 per cent, keeping on 6 out of a cohort of 7. This compares to the 87.5 per cent the Birmingham-based firm achieved in March 2009.

Herbert Smith has managed a 79 per cent retention rate, with 26 out of 33 trainees being offered jobs. This is down slightly on March 2009, when it achieved an 86 per cent retention rate.

Elsewhere, White & Case has managed to retain 89 per cent of its trainees that qualified this month, having employed eight NQs out of a cohort of nine. But this follows a slightly higher retention rate of 92 per cent in February 2009.