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Global M&A deal activity to top $4 trillion this year

Staff writer ▼ | December 17, 2015
M&A deal values are expected to surpass $4 trillion for 2015, according to analysis from Deloitte. The M&A Index predicts there to be 11,300 deals in the fourth quarter of 2015, up by 12% on the third quarter.
Deloitte   To be 11,300 deals in the fourth quarter of 2015
This would generate a total of 42,800 deals for the year, slightly up on the 41,900 deals achieved during 2014. This year, while the recovery was strong in deal values, it was less pronounced in terms of volumes, particularly in Europe.

Iain Macmillan, head of global M&A at Deloitte, commented: “As this record breaking year draws to a close, concerns over global growth are back, along with a divergence in economic and monetary policies. Also, variations in corporate performance and deal Price-to-Earnings Ratios (P/E multiples) between the US and Europe are creating more opportunities. We expect these conditions to define dealmaking in 2016.”

Cross-border M&A has been a feature throughout 2015, with $1.07 trillion in cross-border deals up until mid-November. European companies have been at the centre of this, participating in just over half (53%) of all announced cross-border deals. Within Europe, US companies have completed $114 billion worth of deals, $44bn of which are in the UK.

Iain Macmillan commented: “We think cross-border activity will continue to be a key feature for M&A next year. Uneven economic growth and a slowdown in global trade means companies will need to look far and wide for opportunities.

“For instance in 2015 we saw more M&A investment come from the ‘emerging markets’ into G7 nations than the other way around. China was the most prominent dealmaker from Asia and Chinese companies invested $65.8bn in outbound M&A, its highest ever levels.”

“We also predict a strong resurgence in Japanese dealmaking, as falling domestic consumption there pushes cash rich companies to look abroad for growth prospects.

“Indeed, for the first time, Japanese outbound M&A figures at $56.4bn are higher than the domestic M&A figures of $46bn. 2016 will continue to offer strong prospects for dealmakers, however they would need to be alert to the opportunities amidst divergence.”