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Parsing the Am Law 100

Today may be May Day, but for Bruce MacEwen at Adam Smith, Esq., it feels more like Christmas. With the release of the 2006 Am Law 100 -- the annual listing of the nation's highest-grossing law firms -- MacEwen, whose blog is "an inquiry into the economics of law firms," is reveling in a bounty of blog-able topics.

He started off on Friday with a complete list of the Am Law 100, showing that Skadden retains its coveted (at least by some) place at the top, with annual revenue of $1.6 billion (yes, billion). He follows that post with what he calls "one of my favorite metrics," the top 100 ranked by revenue per lawyer. Here, Wachtell Lipton leads the charge with an astounding $2.4 million in revenue per lawyer. MacEwen has even more fun with numbers as he looks at the biggest gainers or losers on the list. Finally, MacEwen posts his last two charts (at least for the weekend), one illustrating the cumulative market share of the Am Law 100 in rank order and another showing the extent to which each firm's share of total Am Law 100 revenue exceeds or falls short of its share of total Am Law 100 lawyers.

Given that the staff of The American Lawyer worked hard to compile these numbers, they have something to say about them as well. Start with Alison Frankel's overview, "Growing Pains," in which she offers this intriguing conclusion: "The Am Law 100, as a universe, is growing too fast in size to sustain its own long-term revenue expansion." Read her article to find out why. Then read "The Century Thus Far," an analysis by Aric Press, the magazine's editor-in-chief, of "the trend lines and fault lines of the past five years." He tells us: "It's been a heady twenty-first century for law firms." Even more charts and coverage are available at The American Lawyer.

Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on May 1, 2006 at 11:16 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)


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As Bob Ambrogi put it on the Blog Network, the release of The Am Law 100 lists has been “like Christmas” for Bruce MacEwen at Adam Smith, Esq. On the first day The Am Law 100 was released, MacEwen [Read More]

Tracked on May 9, 2006 9:44:06 AM


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