Profit per equity partner (PEP) dropped by 9% to £1m at Clifford Chance in 'disappointing' 2012-13 financial results for the magic circle firm.

Profits fell 6% to £404m, on a turnover drop of 2% to £1.271bn, figures released today show.

Managing partner at Clifford Chance David Childs said the results were ‘disappointing’, following strong revenue growth of 7% in 2011/2012. ‘The weakening of the euro has been unhelpful as so much [business] comes from the eurozone,’ he said.

‘We can’t get away from the fact that M&A has been severely depressed over the last year,’ he said.

In 2011/2012 profits leaped by 13% to £431m, while PEP was up by 7% to £1.07m. The number of equity partners at the firm has risen 10% from 379 in 2011/2012. Another 11 partners were added in 2012/13 to 411. ‘That has consequences for PEP,’ said Childs.

The profit fall contrasts with flat results among Clifford Chance’s magic circle rivals.

Last week Allen & Overy reported profits up 2.2% to £496.7m, with PEP unchanged at £1.1m. Meanwhile profits at Linklaters remained flat at £521.9m on a 1% decrease in turnover. PEP was up 5.6% to £1.313m

Freshfields recorded the biggest rise in profits of 2.4% to £548m. Turnover grew by 7.2% to £1.221bn. Profit per equity partner climbed 7.6% to £1.39m.