A US-based firm has again broken new ground in the City by offering trainees £60,000 salaries for the first time.
Davis Polk & Wardwell has updated information for its 2021 intake, confirming that a second-year trainee salary is now £60,000, an increase of 9%. First year salaries have risen from £50,000 to £55,000.
The rise is another sign of pressure being ratcheted up on established practices in the City, many of which lag far behind their UK counterparts on the payscale.
However, the pay for Davis Polk & Wardwell’s newly qualified (NQ) solicitors (£120,000) has not yet reached the dizzying heights being set by its other US rivals.
In June, the Gazette reported that US firm Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy had become the paying firm in the City offering more than £140,000 by paying NQs £143,000 ($190,000). A host of other firms followed suit.
Davis Polk takes on only four trainees each retention season. They are on a six-month rotation schedule which includes six months in the firm’s New York office.
The trainees will be selected from the firm’s 2019 vacation scheme programme and, according to the firm’s website, will share an office with a senior lawyer, receive tailored training and have extensive access to partners.
Magic circle firm Allen & Overy meanwhile also announced a rise in salaries today. First year trainees are now on £45,000 up from £44,000 while second years will also be paid an extra £1,000 taking their pay to £50,000. A year one NQ salary is now £83,000, up from £81,000.
The firm also announced its trainee intake figures for autumn 2018. It took on 37 out of its 46-strong cohort (80%). 44 trainees applied for a job, with 40 being offered a role. Of the 40, 37 accepted.