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Linklaters last Magic Circle firm to post spring trainee retention rates as Osborne Clarke keeps 100%

Linklaters, Norton Rose Fulbright and Osborne Clarke have all posted their spring trainee retention rates, with Osborne Clarke keeping 100% of its qualifiers for the second spring in a row.

Linklaters will keep 86% of its trainees, with 44 out of 51 trainees from the cohort staying on to become newly-qualified (NQ) lawyers. There were three resignations in the process. Linklaters rate is better than last year when 83% of trainees were kept on, a selection of 45 from a wider pool of 54.

Richard Hodgson, Linklaters trainee solicitor partner, commented: ‘This figure demonstrates our consistency in producing great results when it comes to developing and retaining the future of the firm.’

An even higher percentage was claimed by Osborne Clarke, with 100% of its six trainees making the grade. The NQs will be based across the firm’s three UK offices in London, Bristol and Thames Valley and have specialisms in real estate, corporate finance, commercial and employment. Osborne Clarke also posted a 100% score in last year’s round, with all seven trainees being retained.

Norton Rose has posted a 50/50 gender split in its trainee retention round, which saw 83% of 24 trainees qualify. However, rates are significantly lower than last year when 22 of 23 trainees, a figure of 96%, were retained.

Earlier this month, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer posted a retention rate of 84%, keeping on 31 of its 37 trainees. Fellow Magic Circle firm Allen & Overy recorded an 82% retention rate, significantly down from last spring’s figure of 91%. Slaughter and May lead the Magic Circle in terms of retention, with all of its 25 trainees being kept on.

This spring, Clifford Chance (CC) lagged behind the rest of the Magic Circle, keeping on just 31 of its 46 trainees, 67% of its cohort. 43 of CC’s 46 trainees applied for a contract, CC made 33 offers and retained 31. In spring 2016, CC retained 80% of its trainees.