Kirkland & Ellis London NQ dollar-pegged pay packets swell to over £140,000 as pound hits 31 year low

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By Thomas Connelly on

Brexit fears cause pound to tank


Kirkland & Ellis’ London-based newly qualified (NQ) lawyers will be cracking open the champagne today, after the plummeting value of the pound caused their dollar-pegged salaries to rocket to an astonishing £140,000.

Up from a June figure of around £124,000 this marks an increase of 13%.

With Brexit fears continuing to affect the markets it emerged today that sterling had hit a new 31-year low against the dollar. This means — in simple terms — Kirkland’s young legal talent are now earning obscene levels of cash.

Earlier this summer MoneyLaw mania swept across the US. New York-headquartered giant Cravath, Swaine & Moore upped its junior lawyer pay from $160,000 (£110,000) to $180,000 (£124,000). With a host of US firms following Cravath’s lead, a select few — including Kirkland — chucked the same pay increases at their London lawyers. But, and this is the crucial point, only Kirkland pegged its increase against the dollar.

So back to today: thanks to a tanking pound, Kirkland’s fresh-faced associates are cashing in. According to the latest conversion rate ($1.2 to the pound) an NQ at the firm — which offers around 10 London-based training contracts annually — will now walk away with in excess of £140,000. Seems as if Brexit is alright for some.

Kirkland & Ellis declined to comment.