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Law Watch

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Intellectual Leadership with Law Watch

Law firms today face challenges of unprecedented complexity: clients are increasingly global in their requirements; competitors worldwide seek opportunity in your markets, while ever more mobile partners and associates demand vision and results.

The ability to identify trends and opportunities is an invaluable asset, and industry insight is a key component of successful law firm leadership. With more than 35 years serving the legal profession worldwide, Citi Private Bank has amassed a wealth of industry insight - a wealth we call “Law Watch” and put to good use for our clients.

Law Watch is the name given to the industry insight and research we provide to clients. But detailed results are only shared with those firms that participate in the research. Industry research includes the Annual Survey of Law Firm Financial Performance and the Managing Partner Confidence Index, while industry insight includes Peer Reviews and regional roundtables for senior law firm leaders—as well as strategic advisory services focused on evolving issues including law firm mergers, acquisitions, talent management and capital structure.

Annual Survey of Law Firm Performance

For more than a quarter-century, we have analyzed the fiscal performance of law firms annually. Based on an in-depth survey completed by firms, the data collected depicts results by firms categorized by size across major quantifiable measures including profitability, capitalization, staffing and mobility.

Detailed annual survey results are available only to participants and it is not unusual to see well-thumbed copies of the reports in a managing partner's bookcase. Each year's survey includes an Executive Analysis that not only carefully tracks the results but also explores opinions on timely issues only partly revealed in the numbers, along with recommendations for operational changes. Topics covered in a recent study included the side effects of de-equitization, the ratio of partners to associates and the war for talent that is changing the face of the profession.

Managing Partner Confidence Index (MPCI)

Launched at the beginning of 2007, MPCI is a forward looking benchmark that records and compares the expectations of managing partners regarding the economy in general and the legal profession in particular, overlaid with their expectations for revenue and profit drivers at their respective firms.

MPCI can serve as an instructive comparison between the financial results of the Annual Survey and management expectations.

Peer Review

On an annual basis a Peer Review report allows decision makers to evaluate the performance of their firm against those of their peer competitors, firms with a comparable number of partners, similar specialties and revenues. Or should they prefer, clients can evaluate their capabilities against firms in the next tier, in order to set future goals.

Quarterly Flash

Each calendar quarter a short questionnaire covering key top level metrics is sent to a broad cross section of firms. Firm management is asked questions regarding financial performance, staffing and productivity. Results, which are reported in aggregate, by region and Am Law rank, are distributed to participants electronically. Each quarter about 150 firms representing all regions, Am Law 100 and 2nd 100, and non-Am Law ranked firms participate.


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