Only one of the eight trainees qualifying at Simmons & Simmons next month is staying at the firm.

The figures are sufficiently shocking that the firm has had to try to patch things up internally. A meeting was called on Wednesday where the Managing Partner and Grad Rec Partner tried to reassure the remaining trainees that they would not face a similar bloodbath when they qualify. Apparently the woeful retention rate was down to "difficult market conditions".

Riiight. Those would be the same market conditions that have been faced by competitors such as Ashurst (78% retained), Norton Rose (again, 78%) and Berwin Leighton Paisner (88%).

    Some NQs being shown the door yesterday
In a carefully worded statement, a spokeswoman for the firm said that "of the eight trainees who are qualifying in March, six applied for roles at the firm and we made offers to three". Which presumably were turned down by two on account of being offers for the Funchal office.

UPDATE: After publication, Simmons has confirmed that it is in fact keeping on two trainees.
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