Global M&A Financial Advisory Review Q1 2018

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Worldwide deal making hits record US$1.2 trillion

Worldwide M&A activity totaled US$1.2 trillion during the first quarter of 2018, an increase of 60% compared to the first quarter of 2017 and the strongest first quarter for global M&A since records began in 1980. This marks the fourth quarter to surpass US$1 trillion over the past three years. Overall, 11,136 worldwide deals were announced during the quarter, a decrease of 11% compared to a year ago and the slowest first quarter since 2015.

Mega deals account for 57% of quarterly value

The value of worldwide M&A greater than US$5 billion totalled US$699.1 billion during the first quarter of 2018, more than three times the levels seen a year ago. Forty-nine deals greater than US$5 billion accounted for 57% of announced M&A actvity during the first quarter, marking an all-time high for the number, value and overall percentage of mega deals in any first quarter on record.

Cross-border M&A hits all-time high

Cross-border M&A activity totaled US$520.1 billion during the first quarter of 2018, a 67% increase compared to first quarter 2017 and the strongest first quarter for cross-border M&A on record. Outbound cross-border M&A involving European acquirors totaled US$314.7 billion, more than double first quarter 2017 levels.

European M&A doubles; United States deals up 59%

Record levels of M&A activity for European targets totaled US$471.0 billion during the first quarter of 2018, more than double the level of activity seen during 2017. With US$443.7 bilion in announced deals during first quarter 2018, United States M&A increased 59% compared to a year ago. European deal making accounted for 39% of overall M&A activity during the first quarter, surpassing the United States for the first time in six years.

Energy & power, industrials & healthcare lead sector mix

Deal making in the Energy & Power sector totaled US$176.8 billion during the first quarter of 2018, an increase of 17% compared to 2017 levels and an all-time annual record. Industrials and Healthcare M&A each accounted for 12% of overall M&A during the quarter, while Consumer Staples deal making accounted for 11% of activity.

Completed M&A advisory fees fall 11%

Estimated M&A advisory fees from completed transactions totaled US$8.6 billion during the first quarter of 2018, an 11% decrease from 2017 levels.

Source: Thomson Reuters

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