Baker and McKenzie has turned out to be America’s biggest law firm by revenue overtaking Skadden according to figures available lately.The Chicago based firm overtook its Wall Street rival for the first time in 16 years despite a 3.5 per cent fall in turnover. Revenue was $2.11 billion compared to $2.1 billion at Skadden, according to The American Lawyer’s closely monitored yearly ranking of the largest US law firms.


Skadden,which was co-founded by Joseph Flom,one of the pioneers of modern takeover plans,built its standing by advising on many of the leading acquisitions in latest decades. However, the bend in deals due to the recession led to a 4.5 per cent fall in fees last year, the magazine said.John Conroy, chairman of Baker  and McKenzie, said that his firm’s performance was hopeful given the extent of the depression and was boosted by a pickup in reshuffling work and rigid investigations. He said that Baker and McKenzie also benefited from not being as rigorous in the US and Europe as its biggest global rivals.

Overall,revenues for the top 100 American firms declined by 3.4 per cent to $64.8 billion, the magazine said.However, partners jointly enjoyed a trivial increase in profits due to aggressive cost-cutting by many firms.

Aric Press, editor of The American Lawyer, stated that the American legal market is facing another rough year.Thanks to forceful cost-cutting and a decrease in equity partners, the top 100 managed to eke out a trivial growth in partner profits, he said.