Partner profit increase outperforms associate pay

Average partner profits have outstripped associate salaries over the last six years, according to new research by The Lawyer.

Average partner profits at the UK’s top 10 firms jumped by 32.2 per cent between 2000 and 2006, from £568,300 to £751,700. In contrast, in the same period the average salary paid to newly qualified solicitors increased by 26.4 per cent, from £43,000 to £54,400.

If you strip out the magic circle, which rewarded its associates more generously, the top 10’s bottom six recorded an average profit per equity partner rise of 40 per cent, from £478,000 to £671,000, while raising newly qualified salaries by just 25 per cent, from £43,200 to £54,000.

Newly qualified associates received their biggest pay rises for several years at the start of the current financial year. Linklaters, for example, increased its newly qualified salaries by 6 per cent to £55,100.