Secondary Market Definition

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crossarmant
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Secondary Market Definition

Postby crossarmant » Tue Jul 05, 2011 2:23 pm

So, here on TLS there's a lot of talk of "Secondary Markets" but it seems that there's a shifting scale as to the definition. To some it's any city that's not NYC, LA, or DC. Sometimes it seems to be anything below a 1 million person MSA. For others it seems to be cities smaller than the Top 5-10 cities. So, I'm curious as to what this community considers a "secondary market" and what your cut off is (Besides every other city than the on your law school's in)?

I've always thought of cities outside of a ~5 million metro area to be secondary. Leaving Primary Markets as:

NYC, LA, Chicago, Dallas, Philly, Houston, DC, Miami, ATL

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ahduth
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby ahduth » Tue Jul 05, 2011 4:19 pm

crossarmant wrote:So, here on TLS there's a lot of talk of "Secondary Markets" but it seems that there's a shifting scale as to the definition. To some it's any city that's not NYC, LA, or DC. Sometimes it seems to be anything below a 1 million person MSA. For others it seems to be cities smaller than the Top 5-10 cities. So, I'm curious as to what this community considers a "secondary market" and what your cut off is (Besides every other city than the on your law school's in)?

I've always thought of cities outside of a ~5 million metro area to be secondary. Leaving Primary Markets as:

NYC, LA, Chicago, Dallas, Philly, Houston, DC, Miami, ATL


SF/Silicon Valley amirite?

For big law, how about any market where the top firm(s) pay $160k out the door?

bdubs
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby bdubs » Tue Jul 05, 2011 4:33 pm

I think that secondary markets are probably anything with less than 2500 lawyers. So that would be Seattle, Denver, Phoenix, KC, St Louis, Minneapolis, Charlotte, Miami.

Major markets are LA, SF/SV, Chicago, Houston, Dallas, Atlanta, Philly, Washington, NY, Boston

http://www.law.com/jsp/nlj/PubArticleNL ... 2491269007

For big law, how about any market where the top firm(s) pay $160k out the door?


I think there are firms in each of the major markets that pay $160k, although it may not be the prevailing (i.e. "market") rate everywhere. Also, there are firms in smaller markets that pay $160k.

ETA: Surprisingly NALP doesn't list a single firm paying $160k in Philly.

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TTH
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby TTH » Wed Jul 06, 2011 9:56 am

I think, for TLS purposes, secondary markets are those markets where the prevailing rate is lower than 160 but higher than 100, although some lower-paying markets may still get mentioned with the bigger markets due to tradition (Philly).

bdubs
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby bdubs » Wed Jul 06, 2011 10:11 am

TTH wrote:I think, for TLS purposes, secondary markets are those markets where the prevailing rate is lower than 160 but higher than 100, although some lower-paying markets may still get mentioned with the bigger markets due to tradition (Philly).


This seems to be a sticky definition because even NY has a number of firms that pay below 160k, they just aren't on TLS's radar.

My understanding was that people thought legal markets were primary or secondary based on the number of available job opportunities (i.e. how many lawyers/firms are there in the city).

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TTH
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby TTH » Wed Jul 06, 2011 10:14 am

bdubs wrote:
TTH wrote:I think, for TLS purposes, secondary markets are those markets where the prevailing rate is lower than 160 but higher than 100, although some lower-paying markets may still get mentioned with the bigger markets due to tradition (Philly).


This seems to be a sticky definition because even NY has a number of firms that pay below 160k, they just aren't on TLS's radar.


Sure, but the prevailing rate is 160k. If you asked anyone "What's the market rate in NY?" The answer would be 160, but some stragglers like Jones Day still pay 145. If you asked someone the market in say...Atlanta, the answer might be 145, but there's a lot more variation (as high as 160 maybe, as low as 100)

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thesealocust
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby thesealocust » Wed Jul 06, 2011 9:16 pm

bdubs wrote:My understanding was that people thought legal markets were primary or secondary based on the number of available job opportunities (i.e. how many lawyers/firms are there in the city).


Basically this. There's no hard and fast definition, but it's got a lot to do with the number of positions available at the entry level from large firms. Certainly one could talk about "secondary markets" and not be talking about big firms, but it's not the usual usage.

A secondary market is thus one that is less of a hub for legal work. NYC, DC, Chicago, LA, SV are obviously not secondary markets. Most others are at least arguable, and it really depends on context and what the person using the phrase is trying to convey.

lawgod
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby lawgod » Wed Jul 06, 2011 9:23 pm

Where is SV? I want to go there.

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thesealocust
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby thesealocust » Wed Jul 06, 2011 9:30 pm

lawgod wrote:Where is SV? I want to go there.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silicon_Valley

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crossarmant
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby crossarmant » Wed Jul 06, 2011 9:38 pm

Well, you can include some markets less than 160k, because I can guarantee you than $145k in Philly will probably go farther than $160k in NYC or LA.

bdubs
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby bdubs » Wed Jul 06, 2011 9:46 pm

crossarmant wrote:Well, you can include some markets less than 160k, because I can guarantee you than $145k in Philly will probably go farther than $160k in NYC or LA.


Lots of people try to do this, but it just doesn't hold up. Texas always wins out on pay relative to COL but many don't think of Houston and Dallas as major markets (even though I think they are).

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crossarmant
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Re: Secondary Market Definition

Postby crossarmant » Wed Jul 06, 2011 9:59 pm

bdubs wrote:
crossarmant wrote:Well, you can include some markets less than 160k, because I can guarantee you than $145k in Philly will probably go farther than $160k in NYC or LA.


Lots of people try to do this, but it just doesn't hold up. Texas always wins out on pay relative to COL but many don't think of Houston and Dallas as major markets (even though I think they are).


Texas: It's like a whole 'nother country.




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