Lawyers are a pessimistic bunch by nature and, with the big four Magic Circle firms posting another year of solid but unspectacular revenue and profit per equity partner (PEP) growth, the consensus view is that 2018/19 could have been a lot worse.
Amid a wider slowing of the UK economy and Europe’s deal markets in the face of Brexit and a range of cross-border headwinds, the City’s big four international players posted another year of the moderate results that have defined their post-banking-crisis form. Continue reading “Linklaters leads Magic Circle pack amid solid 2018/19 trading but uncertainty looms over the City elite”
Compared to the dramatic events that have defined each of the three previous years, 2018/19 was relatively benign for the world’s top 100 law firms. True, the world has been dealing with increasing protectionism, US-China trade wars and the endless saga of the UK-EU divorce. But none of these headwinds were a shock for an industry that three years ago was reeling from the Brexit referendum in the UK and in 2017 from the start of Donald Trump’s presidency in the US.
Last year’s Global 100 report spoke of two milestones, with the global legal elite smashing the $100bn collective revenue barrier and entering the age of the $3bn law firm. Those looking for events of a comparable magnitude this time around will be disappointed. But if the legal industry appeared resilient in summer 2017 and flourishing 12 months later, this year it is nothing short of booming. Collectively, these are the strongest results since the pain of the financial crisis started to be felt ten years ago. Overall revenue for the group grew by 9% to $113.51bn – the fastest rate of growth for a decade; gross profit rose by a healthy 8% to hit $43.44bn – a pace unmatched in ten years. Average profit per equity partner (PEP) also rose by a solid 7% to $1.87m. Continue reading “Global 100 overview: Escape velocity as the world’s largest firms pick up momentum”
Despite Brexit, Trump and trade wars signalling a tentative prognosis from Global 100 leaders for the remainder of the year, many firms entered 2019 with engines blazing
‘Volatility, trade wars, Brexit and Trump notwithstanding, it’s been a good financial year. Each of our practice areas are strong in terms of work and economically. Mandates are flowing in, it’s a positive story. Threats are out there. Brexit will be priced into the market for the next eight to ten years. There will be peaks and troughs and no clarity for a while.’ Continue reading “The Last Word: New frontiers”