Legal Business Blogs

Ashurst seeks competitive edge with second new lawyer salary increase of 2018

Ashurst has become the latest City firm to review its trainee and newly qualified (NQ) salaries for the second time this year, upping the latter’s basic pay to £82,000.

The changes, which take effect on 1 November, give NQs a £6,000 salary hike from the £76,000 given during the last review in May, while a performance-related bonus could bolster compensation to £94,300.

Meanwhile, one year qualified lawyers will take home £86,000, a £6,000 uptick, with a bonus yielding a total possible salary of £98,900. Two-year qualified lawyers will earn basic pay of £94,000, a £7,000 increase, and a bonus could increase compensation to £117,500.

London managing partner, Simon Beddow (pictured), attributed the pay rise to ‘a very strong start to the financial year… together with the desire to remain as competitive as possible’.

Ashurst’s revised pay means the firm only slightly lags the NQ rate of £83,000 offered by Allen & Overy and Linklaters, with the latter earlier this month also increasing its pay for the second time this year.

It is also higher than Slaughter and May’s £80,000 for NQs, while Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer pays NQs £85,000 and Clifford Chance in August increased NQ pay to £91,000, including bonuses.

In what was billed as a ‘strong performance globally’, Ashurst in June reported a 4% uptick in revenue for 2017/18 and sustained the 11% growth in profit per equity partner (PEP) achieved last year.

The firm’s revenue for the last financial year was £564m, up from £541m, while PEP stood at £743,000, compared with £672,000 in 2017. The results marked a second year of growth following two consecutive years of decline following the City stalwart’s merger with Australia’s Blake Dawson in 2013.