The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has launched its first dedicated legal training programme in a bid to attract young lawyers who will remain at the regulator over the long term.
The FSA is set to have its first intake of trainees in September, with the aim of offering two training contracts a year.
As part of the new scheme, trainees will spend a year in the general counsel's division, six months working in the enforcement division and a further six months on secondment to a City law firm.
The graduate salary starts at £27,500, with a sign-on bonus and a flexible benefits package. The FSA is also offering a maintenance grant of £6,000 per year to students.
FSA solicitor Ed Hyde said the regulator had been swamped by applications and had already appointed people to the new roles.
"We received more than 100 applications for each position," he said. "They've attracted a lot of attention because trainees here are exposed to everything from advising on policy to contentious law. They also get a seat at a City law firm.
"We're looking to recruit trainees for their long-term potential."
Before the introduction of the legal development programme, legal trainees were taken on via the general training programme.