Magic circle giants Freshfields and Allen & Overy have each reported higher profits in upbeat financial reports – although only one can boast of double-digit rises.

Freshfields disclosed that profit per equity partner increased by 12% to £1.73m in the year ended 30 April.

Net income rose 12% to £683m on revenues up 5% to £1.4bn.

The firm, which targeted US business during the year and expanded its private equity relationships, now has 2,800 lawyers in offices around the world.

Managing partner Stephan Eilers said: ‘We have positioned ourselves effectively to take advantage of growth areas and we have a very strong team of professionals delivering exceptional outcomes for our clients. As clients adapt to the challenges and opportunities presented by digital transformation, we are ambitious about the opportunities this brings and are investing across our business.’

Profits were also up, albeit by a lesser margin, at Allen & Overy, which announced its results for the same period today.

Profit per equity partner in 2017/18 rose 4% to £1.64m, with profit before tax rising 3% to £690m. Revenue increased 4% to £1.57bn.

Andrew Ballheimer

Andrew Ballheimer

The firm said all practice groups performed well, in particular international capital markets, corporate and taxation.

Global managing partner Andrew Ballheimer said: ‘We have had a busy year across our network and it’s gratifying to see another strong increase in revenue after outstanding figures last year. These results speak to a powerful client proposition, underpinned by the calibre and hard work of our people and a compelling international platform.’

Earlier this week magic circle peer Clifford Chance posted the best results in its history, marking what is shaping up to be a stellar year in the City.