Hughes Hubbard & Reed was on a downward trajectory even before the pandemic, steadily losing lawyers and revenue over the past several years. But as it has for several other big firms, the 2020 recession has highlighted and amplified the firm’s challenges.

After taking out a multimillion-dollar Paycheck Protection Program loan, Hughes Hubbard laid off more than 30 people this summer, according to two sources close to the firm. And in July, 11 international trade lawyers decamped the firm for Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld and McDermott Will & Emery, a group whose total book of business was more than $12 million, sources said.

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