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Clifford Chance keeps 42 out of 52 autumn NQs

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Magic circle giant bounces back from disappointing spring result

Clifford Chance has revealed a 2017 autumn retention score of 81%.

Of the 52 trainees due to qualify this month, 42 will be taking up newly qualified (NQ) positions. The magic circle outfit — which offers around 80 training contacts each year — confirmed this afternoon that it had received 51 applications and made 42 offers.

Clifford Chance did not reveal the details of which departments its new recruits would qualify into. Legal Cheek’s Most List shows that trainees earn £43,500 in year one, rising to £49,000 in year two. Upon qualification, an associate will start on a salary of £85,000.

Clifford Chance is traditionally a strong retention performer. Last year, it racked up scores of 80% (43 out of 54) and 82% (40 out of 49). However, there was a notable dip in form earlier this year when the firm kept hold of just 31 of its 46 (67%) spring rookies.

The Canary Wharf giant — which scored A*s for its office, perks and secondment opportunities in our 2016 Trainee & Junior Lawyer Survey — is the final magic circle outfit to reveal its autumn result.

Kicking off another retention season, Slaughter and May trumpeted a magic circle-topping 91% score (29 out of 32) in July.

Elsewhere, Allen & Overy kept hold of 40 of its 47 autumn qualifiers, giving the firm a solid 85% result, while Freshfields confirmed Legal Cheek predictions when it posted an uncharacteristically low 66% (27 out of 41).

Finally Linklaters, the largest training contract provider in the City with 110 positions annually, revealed 47 of its 56 September NQs (84%) had put pen to paper on permanent deals.

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