Linklaters sees half-year turnover drop by 9.5 per cent

This broadly mirrors the financial performance of magic circle rival Allen & Overy, which posted a 7 per cent fall for the first six months of the year (6 November 2009).

Linklaters managing partner Simon Davies (pictured) said the firm’s first-half performance had been broadly in line with the firm’s expectations given continuing challenging market conditions.

He added: “While we don’t expect a rapid recovery in the market, we’ve seen an upturn in our activity levels on the second half of last year particularly in the BRIC [Brazil, Russia, India and China] and the Middle East markets where we have very strong capability.”

The news comes after Linklaters overtook Clifford Chance to become the UK’s largest firm by turnover in 2008-09 after generating turnover of £1.3bn (6 July 2009).

The firm, which saw revenue remain static year on year, achieved this after Clifford Chance saw revenues drop by 5 per cent to £1.26bn.

Linklaters underwent a massive restructuring earlier in the year, becoming the first magic circle firm to do so (29 January 2009).The full cost of the restructuring was booked in the 2008-09 financial year.