Merger mania

An impressive statistic this week, from a sector that is no stranger to them - M&A. Apparently, £1,000bn of mergers and acquisitions has been announced globally so far this year. That's a trillion pounds' worth of deals, and it's only May. If things continue at this rate, the 2007 M&A tally will amount to £3,000bn, a record-breaking figure and one for once truly deserving of the epithet ‘mind-boggling'.

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010
The British component of that £1,000bn - deals in which UK companies figure as either buyer or seller - is a ‘mere' £235bn. Yes, that's right - a whopping 23.5% of global M&A deals are at least partly British. So when it comes to cutting a deal, we Brits sure know how to punch above our weight. Makes you proud, doesn't it?

To put all these impossibly vast sums of money into some kind of context, £1,000bn is roughly equivalent to the entire UK GDP for 2005. That's a lot of dosh, whichever way you look at it. Coupled with the extremely buoyant stock markets around the world - especially in China - some commentators are predicting that a painful correction is increasingly inevitable. Someone better tell the boys and girls in M&A…

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