Will the Christmas deal rush arrive?

Last week we released some 11-month preliminary figures for global M&A activity and the picture was not flowing with joyous tidings. In a nutshell, for the third consecutive year global M&A activity is declining in terms of deal values and is currently down by around a third on the same period in 2009. What’s more disconcerting is that it’s numbers of deals where the real decline is being exposed.

Even taking into account that the figures were based on 11 months rather than 12, the decline in numbers of deals is around 25%. Even with the end of year upturn to try and complete deals, there is no way that December will see the sort of numbers of deals that will mean the year will finish close to last year.

The only real bright spot has been private equity, with the year shaping up to be a significant improvement on 2009, albeit still not close to the sort of levels we were seeing pre-2008. Deal values are up by around 34% on the same time in 2009, however, consistent with the broader market, deal volumes are still low.

Ultimately Christmas and the end of the year is rapidly approaching and I for one will be hoping that the Christmas elves start delivering what we are all hoping for – deals!

Filed under: M&A, PE, dealmaking