We’ve been hearing reports all morning about some news leaking around the offices at Shearman & Sterling. One tipster collects the potentially bad news in a clear way:
[M]id and senior-level associates that would in normal economic conditions have left any way are being asked to leave. In addition, Shearman’s senior management has advised Partners to be strict in reviews in the upcoming review process (scheduled for the coming weeks) for all levels of associates (not only mid- and senior-levels).
Apparently, the firm is determined that any layoffs get reported as “performance based” attrition rather than full-on layoffs. Sources suggest that firm leadership is still smarting over the reputation hit they took when they laid off people, back in 2001.
The firm has not responded to a request for comment.
Whatever they want to call it, there seems to be good reason for Shearman associates to be worried over the next couple of weeks. We’ve also learned that Shearman’s Capital Markets practice is not doing well. A tipster reports:
Business in Capital Markets has slowed dramatically over the past several months. Junior associates from Capital Markets have been temporarily staffed on litigation matters.
We know that Capital Markets practice groups are slow all over. But staffing corporate attorneys on litigation work suggests that there are larger problems with Shearman’s corporate practices.
Stealth layoffs at Loeb & Loeb, and the firm’s response, after the jump.