Bakers holds City associate pay bands at 2010 levels

Baker & McKenzie has confirmed it is freezing pay for its London associates at last year’s levels, with trainee salaries recording the only rise in the City office.

The firm’s decision to maintain its 2010 pay levels comes as it prepares to release its global financial results in a fortnight. It is understood that the results will show a slight decline in profitability compared with last year’s average profit per equity partner figure of £650,000.

The freeze means newly qualified associates will continue to earn a median salary of £61,000, rising to £63,000 after six months.

Associates with one year of post-qualification experience (PQE) will continue to take home £68,000 (rising to £71,000 after six months) and two and three-year PQE rates will remain at £74,000 and £82,000 respectively. Top-performing associates could also earn up to 10 per cent extra through a performance-based increment.

While the pay levels remain frozen, lawyers will continue to progress through the bands as usual.

A spokesman for the firm said: “We work hard to ensure that our salaries are competitive and that our trainees and associates are well rewarded for the work they do. Some bands remain at the same level this year but all our associates will benefit from pay rises as they move up through those bands.”

The firm has raised its first-year trainee salary by one per cent to £38,000, while second-year trainees will take home £43,000, which represents an eight per cent rise.