Daily News: February 24, 2015

M&A Momentum to Continue in 2015

Law firm White & Case and Mergermarket said in the U.S. M&A 2014-2015 Full Steam Ahead report that M&A momentum from last year is expected to continue into 2015. According to John Reiss, head of White & Case’s Global Mergers & Acquisitions Practice, buyers should proceed with caution, although prospects for dealmaking in 2015 remain quite positive because many of the underlining factors which drove M&A activity in 2014 continue to be present.

Confirming that 2014 was a banner year for the U.S. M&A market, the report found that deal activity was at its highest level for five years. Importantly, the U.S. economy is stable and growing – particularly compared to markets in Europe and Asia – and this is attracting an increasing number of non-U.S. buyers.

According to the report, companies announced 4,795 deals worth $1.4 trillion in 2014, a 22% increase in the number of deals and a 57% increase in deal values compared to 2013.

In terms of sectors, technology, media and telecommunications was the most active sector in 2014 with 1,029 deals. Energy, mining and utilities recorded the highest value in 2014 with $318 billion worth of deals, more than double that of 2013.

Overall, deal value fell in January 2015 compared to December 2014, but that is consistent with patterns in recent years, with value remaining static or falling from December to January in the previous two years.