Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

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thesealocust
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Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby thesealocust » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:20 pm

Large banks laid people off yesterday and today. Goldman laid people off earlier in the spring and there is supposedly more to come.

reuters wrote:Challenger, Gray & Christmas, an employment consulting firm, said the financial sector has outlined 21 percent more job cuts so far this year than it did in 2010.


I'm actually haven't looked at or thought about this kind of data, so I couldn't tell you off the cuff the extent to which this is normal or the extent to which this matches the wall street layoffs that preceded law firm trimming.

For those of you who are new to the legal sector, it's only relatively recently that we've emerged from massive layoffs at law firms. Leaving aside the biggest events, I remember sometime in the spring of my 1L year (so like March 2010) when we realized it had been a week since layoffs were reported on ATL, which seemed like a long time.

Anybody have more insight into what this might mean for law firm hiring?

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BruceWayne
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby BruceWayne » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:24 pm

....
Last edited by BruceWayne on Sat Jun 25, 2011 11:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

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thesealocust
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby thesealocust » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:28 pm

BruceWayne wrote:You can always go to a firm later on.


Maybe a firm, but biglaw basically exclusively hires fresh law school grads. People lateral from places like DoJ and the SEC, but that's hardly worth counting on for the vast majority of law students. For an overwhelming majority of students with any chance at biglaw, 2L summer -> graduation offer is the only realistic shot at biglaw.

Also PI/Gov are hit by hiring freezes and budget cuts right now which makes getting a foot in the door far from simple. That being said, once you have a federal government job that you didn't get from the electorate the perks / job security are unreal.

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Bronx Bum
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby Bronx Bum » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:31 pm

BruceWayne wrote:This is another reason why I've started leaning PI/government. Lower pay, but LRAP and IBR make up for that, and higher job security. You can always go to a firm later on. Something for folks to consider.


LOLWUT those jobs are becoming just as hard to get as biglaw.

Who do you know in PI who is going to get you though the door?

seriouslyinformative
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby seriouslyinformative » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:40 pm

The theory is that since compensation on Wall Street is now more base salary and less bonus, the tradeoff is that layoffs are more likely because the banks can't just lower bonuses to compensate.

areyouinsane
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby areyouinsane » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:45 pm

This is another reason why I've started leaning PI/government.


ROTFL. Public interest and government are shedding lawyers by the wheelbarrow load:

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/0 ... en_co.html

and

http://articles.philly.com/2010-08-14/n ... ewer-cases


A chick I dated for a while 2 years ago was dinged from Legal Aid in the bloodbath- she called me the other day to ask about doc review temp. jobs and how to apply, etc. Sadly, most of the temp jobs have been outsourced to India:

http://www.globallpoconference.com/usa/ ... cade-.html

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thesealocust
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby thesealocust » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:46 pm

seriouslyinformative wrote:The theory is that since compensation on Wall Street is now more base salary and less bonus, the tradeoff is that layoffs are more likely because the banks can't just lower bonuses to compensate.


Yeah, I've read about that too, and it makes sense intuitively.

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AreJay711
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby AreJay711 » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:47 pm

areyouinsane wrote:
This is another reason why I've started leaning PI/government.


ROTFL. Public interest and government are shedding lawyers by the wheelbarrow load:

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/0 ... en_co.html

and

http://articles.philly.com/2010-08-14/n ... ewer-cases


A chick I dated for a while 2 years ago was dinged from Legal Aid in the bloodbath- she called me the other day to ask about doc review temp. jobs and how to apply, etc. Sadly, most of the temp jobs have been outsourced to India:

http://www.globallpoconference.com/usa/ ... cade-.html


I'm sure you could have come up with something for her to do.

seriouslyinformative
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby seriouslyinformative » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:49 pm

Things that should precipitate bad tides at law firms: a tightening of the credit/capital markets. Anyone working at firms that specialize in work in these fields should see the storm on the horizon. Thus, if any of you work at these firms, your best bet in contributing to this thread is to press the "anonymous post" button and say whether there's been a slowdown in work in those departments in your firm.

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bjsesq
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby bjsesq » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:53 pm

I really don't want to see all this shit.

areyouinsane
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby areyouinsane » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:57 pm

I highly recommend you read the outsourcing article I posted in this thread. The "future" described in the article has already hit the temporary doc review attorneys: those jobs are now for the most part long gone. What's amazing is how quickly it happened: once the ABA blessed outsourcing with it's official opinion, the doc review jobs vanished almost overnight.

There is now a push for the ABA to start accrediting offshore law schools in India, China, and other developing nations. That way, even the handful of supervisory positions can be given to natives of those countries, who will work for less than 10 K a YEAR!:

http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1200996336809


How do you intend to compete with these folks? Answer: you won't. The clients call the shots now, and they want the paper churned in India. The new model will be a handful of senior partners in NYC, and warehouse upon warehouse of serfs in India doing the doc review.

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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:57 pm

seriouslyinformative wrote:Things that should precipitate bad tides at law firms: a tightening of the credit/capital markets. Anyone working at firms that specialize in work in these fields should see the storm on the horizon. Thus, if any of you work at these firms, your best bet in contributing to this thread is to press the "anonymous post" button and say whether there's been a slowdown in work in those departments in your firm.


I summer at one of the handful of firms that are synonymous with the credit/capital markets practice. Attorneys on those deals are busy like you wouldn't believe and have been for a long time. Excessively swamped, crazy hot market. It comes up constantly too.

If they see storm clouds, they're neither telling the summers nor unconsciously betraying their fear (well, possibly hope, they're pretty fucking tired).

seriouslyinformative
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby seriouslyinformative » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
seriouslyinformative wrote:Things that should precipitate bad tides at law firms: a tightening of the credit/capital markets. Anyone working at firms that specialize in work in these fields should see the storm on the horizon. Thus, if any of you work at these firms, your best bet in contributing to this thread is to press the "anonymous post" button and say whether there's been a slowdown in work in those departments in your firm.


I summer at one of the handful of firms that are synonymous with the credit/capital markets practice. Attorneys on those deals are busy like you wouldn't believe and have been for a long time. Excessively swamped, crazy hot market. It comes up constantly too.

If they see storm clouds, they're neither telling the summers nor unconsciously betraying their fear (well, possibly hope, they're pretty fucking tired).


You are a god among men. Thank you, sir.

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bjsesq
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby bjsesq » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:01 pm

areyouinsane wrote:I highly recommend you read the outsourcing article I posted in this thread. The "future" described in the article has already hit the temporary doc review attorneys: those jobs are now for the most part long gone. What's amazing is how quickly it happened: once the ABA blessed outsourcing with it's official opinion, the doc review jobs vanished almost overnight.

There is now a push for the ABA to start accrediting offshore law schools in India, China, and other developing nations. That way, even the handful of supervisory positions can be given to natives of those countries, who will work for less than 10 K a YEAR!:

http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1200996336809


How do you intend to compete with these folks? Answer: you won't. The clients call the shots now, and they want the paper churned in India. The new model will be a handful of senior partners in NYC, and warehouse upon warehouse of serfs in India doing the doc review.


I would likely pay more attention to your posts if you posted something besides "sky is falling" shit once in a while.

MrAnon
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby MrAnon » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:05 pm

NO BIG DEAL. I learned on this very chatblog yesterday that these layoffs are the long anticipated result of DODD FRANK. THEREFORE LAW FIRMS WILL NOT BE AFFECTED AT ALL. After all, law firms saw this coming months and months ago.

seriouslyinformative
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby seriouslyinformative » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:06 pm

MrAnon wrote:NO BIG DEAL. I learned on this very chatblog yesterday that these layoffs are the long anticipated result of DODD FRANK. THEREFORE LAW FIRMS WILL NOT BE AFFECTED AT ALL. After all, law firms saw this coming months and months ago.


Sarcasm aside, Dodd Frank has actually given firms more business as they rush to provide clients advice on the ins and outs of it. Read into that what you will.

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Grizz
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby Grizz » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:08 pm

I'm already in law school. What the fuck am I gonna do about it?

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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby robotclubmember » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:13 pm

bjsesq wrote:
areyouinsane wrote:I highly recommend you read the outsourcing article I posted in this thread. The "future" described in the article has already hit the temporary doc review attorneys: those jobs are now for the most part long gone. What's amazing is how quickly it happened: once the ABA blessed outsourcing with it's official opinion, the doc review jobs vanished almost overnight.

There is now a push for the ABA to start accrediting offshore law schools in India, China, and other developing nations. That way, even the handful of supervisory positions can be given to natives of those countries, who will work for less than 10 K a YEAR!:

http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1200996336809


How do you intend to compete with these folks? Answer: you won't. The clients call the shots now, and they want the paper churned in India. The new model will be a handful of senior partners in NYC, and warehouse upon warehouse of serfs in India doing the doc review.


I would likely pay more attention to your posts if you posted something besides "sky is falling" shit once in a while.


areyouinsane posts stuff that seems legit, the statistical evidence bears out what he says, and on a forum that is packed mostly with law students and 0L's (yours truly) at top schools who have little to no personal insight to shed on the topic of legal employment in the real world, his posts have merit. this forum is where the top 25% of people at T14 schools come to talk about bidding strategies. a vocal minority. for everyone else, areyouinsane's work experience is their future reality. even if his stories and insights are depressing, they're far from being false.

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bjsesq
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby bjsesq » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:16 pm

robotclubmember wrote:
bjsesq wrote:
areyouinsane wrote:I highly recommend you read the outsourcing article I posted in this thread. The "future" described in the article has already hit the temporary doc review attorneys: those jobs are now for the most part long gone. What's amazing is how quickly it happened: once the ABA blessed outsourcing with it's official opinion, the doc review jobs vanished almost overnight.

There is now a push for the ABA to start accrediting offshore law schools in India, China, and other developing nations. That way, even the handful of supervisory positions can be given to natives of those countries, who will work for less than 10 K a YEAR!:

http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1200996336809


How do you intend to compete with these folks? Answer: you won't. The clients call the shots now, and they want the paper churned in India. The new model will be a handful of senior partners in NYC, and warehouse upon warehouse of serfs in India doing the doc review.


I would likely pay more attention to your posts if you posted something besides "sky is falling" shit once in a while.


areyouinsane posts stuff that seems legit, the statistical evidence bears out what he says, and on a forum that is packed mostly with law students and 0L's (yours truly) at top schools who have little to no personal insight to shed on the topic of legal employment in the real world, his posts have merit. this forum is where the top 25% of people at T14 schools come to talk about bidding strategies. a vocal minority. for everyone else, areyouinsane's work experience is their future reality. even if his stories and insights are depressing, they're far from being false.


He posted a bunch of shit about law firms outsourcing which didn't contribute to the discussion about wall street layoffs at all. I never said what he posted wasn't true, btw, rather that because it's essentially all he posts I tend to ignore him. No matter, none of this is relevant to the thread, so we should just drop it.

09042014
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby 09042014 » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:18 pm

If firms were going to outsource their attorneys they could start right now by hiring TTT grads. You don't think Skadden could find 200 people willing to take 40,000 dollars a year for 2000 billable hours?

Firm's aren't stupid. They make their money overcharging for associates work.

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robotclubmember
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby robotclubmember » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:26 pm

bjsesq wrote:He posted a bunch of shit about law firms outsourcing which didn't contribute to the discussion about wall street layoffs at all. I never said what he posted wasn't true, btw, rather that because it's essentially all he posts I tend to ignore him. No matter, none of this is relevant to the thread, so we should just drop it.


this is a law board, so i assume this was supposed to thematically tie back to legal jobs in some way. let's just agree the whole premise for this thread is stupid ass bullshit lol

seriouslyinformative
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby seriouslyinformative » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:28 pm

This thread has already taken a dumb track. The point of the OP is whether Wall Street layoffs portend layoffs at law firms. It's not about reigniting the outsourcing debate. The former is an intelligent point of discussion. The latter is beating a dead horse.

Go beat the dead horse elsewhere, please.

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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby Morgan12Oak » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:36 pm

I have heard about these layoffs too and they are actually happening. What isn't clear is why they are being laid off. I've heard that its in anticipation of the slowdown in the economy that will happen in Q3 and Q4, especially if we do face a massive sovereign debt downgrade which we are on track for. I bet its for PR so that they can claim they aren't laying people off in the downturn... since they did it before.

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thesealocust
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby thesealocust » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:37 pm

seriouslyinformative wrote:This thread has already taken a dumb track. The point of the OP is whether Wall Street layoffs portend layoffs at law firms. It's not about reigniting the outsourcing debate. The former is an intelligent point of discussion. The latter is beating a dead horse.

Go beat the dead horse elsewhere, please.


Thanks and agreed.

I guess the next few days might help figure out how big/broad these cuts really are. I just don't have a good sense for how the financial industries hums along in a normal year. Any (mass) layoffs were news in law firms, but I get the impression that financial firms trim employees with much greater regularity.

Relatedly, does anyone know what's triggering the layoffs? Deal work seems hot in general, and firms still seem busy... maybe the banks see the storm clouds first?

seriouslyinformative
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Re: Uh oh... they're gassing the canaries (Wall Street layoffs)

Postby seriouslyinformative » Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:12 pm

Mostly slowdown because of the sovereign debt crisis abroad. Luckily, our banks aren't too exposed to a default, though our exposure is still in the billions. However, many foreign banks are leveraged on Greek debt, especially French banks. A Greek default could repeat a death spiral for banks abroad whose shockwaves will be felt here. Some analysts compare it to the collapse of Lehman Brothers. I'm not sure it'll be that bad.

If Greece does default, I feel like the end of the Euro is in order. If Greece doesn't default (and I don't think they will), we'll be fine.




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