In the year leading up to the layoff of 45 lawyers in January, Reed Smith saw drops in key financial metrics. Gross revenue slid 2.5 percent, to $1.123 billion, while revenue per lawyer declined 1.4 percent, to $695,000, and profits per partner fell 8.3 percent, to $1.105 million.

Global managing partner Sandy Thomas says the layoffs were an efficiency measure and are not related to the 2015 results, which he characterized as solid. He attributed the dips to mass tort and intellectual property matters that were resolved sooner than expected, costs incurred in opening an office in Frankfurt and a slowdown in the energy sector. “When you have a commodities market that has slumped like it has, we are not immune,” he says.

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