As if the position of newly qualified (NQ) lawyers wasn’t bad enough, with the job market turbulent and offers of only short-term contracts from some firms, recruiters are telling City firms that if they want to compete in the new legal world and halt a jobs exodus to the regions and in-house legal departments they need to cut salaries significantly for NQs.

While the current ‘gold standard’ for a serious City offering is around £60,000 firms are being told to consider reducing this to £50,000 for NQs in non-premium areas. Bear in mind that US firms will still be offering up to £100,000, will any City player be brave enough to make the cut?