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Hogan Lovells boosts trainee and NQ wedge to join Slaughters at top of English pay table

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Anglo-US firm waves two fingers at UK deflation as it pumps up newly-qualified salaries by 7.5%

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Transatlantic global practice Hogan Lovells has greeted the arrival of deflationary Britain by whacking up trainee and newly-qualified salaries by as much as 7.5% to become the best-paying English firm at those levels.

The move comes against the backdrop of strong suggestions that a magic circle firm will announce at the end of the week that it will also be throwing more money at trainees and junior lawyers.

Hogan Lovells confirmed the pay rise this afternoon, saying that from the beginning of this month, its first-year trainees are taking home £41,000 annually. That is a rise of 4% over HogLov’s previous first-year rate of £39,500.

The move takes the Holborn and Washington DC-based practice above magic circle player Clifford Chance by £500 in that category. Hogan Lovells will now be on a par with the London offices of US firms Kirkland & Ellis and Weil Gotshal Manges. The London office of Davis Polk remains top of the trainee pay table, offering £50,000 in the first year.

Qualifying solicitors at Hog-Lovs will have even more reason to tug their forelocks when management committee big-wigs brush pass them in the corridors. Qualification salaries have also been bumped up — by £5,000 to £70,000.

That represents a 7.5% increase, taking the firm to joint top of the Legal Cheek league table for English practices. Hogan Lovells will be paying NQs the same wage as those at Slaughter and May, which at the end of last month announced it was boosting pay to £70,000.

Hog-Lovs and S&M are now paying NQs £2,500 more than Clifford Chance.

The Hogan Lovells munificence comes at a time when the Bank of England announced yesterday that the UK had slipped into deflation for the first time in 55 years. Only the fairly senior members of the firm’s management team were even alive when consumer prices were last this low.

Nonetheless, salary inflation at the top City law firms seems to be bucking trends elsewhere.

Legal Cheek understands that magic circle practice Linklaters has also boosted pay at the junior end. However, detailed figures remain sketchy and the firm has declined to comment until the end of this week.

Previously

Slaughter and May leaps to top of magic circle newly-qualified pay pile [Legal Cheek]