Cooling macro economic drivers will mean that global transaction activity next year will be marginally down on 2018 pulled back by weaker European markets, reveals the fourth Global Transactions Forecast issued by Baker McKenzie and Oxford Economics (OE). The report, based on forecast macro economic indicators from OE, projects that 2019 is likely to be a year of two halves. Several major transactions announced in 2018 are set to complete in the first half of 2019, while underlying economic conditions should remain strong throughout this period. However, macro drivers will cool the market through the latter half of next year.
Global M&A value is predicted to fall to $2.9trn in 2019 – down from $3.1trn this year – before a further decline to $2.3trn in 2020. With some major IPOs scheduled for 2019, we foresee total proceeds at $232bn – up from $220bn in 2018 – before dropping to $154bn in 2020. In 2021 and beyond, with borrowing costs settling at their ‘neutral’ rates and equity markets enjoying better growth, we see the potential for the start of a new upturn in both M&A and IPOs.
Paul Rawlinson Global Chair of Baker McKenzie comments: “We remain cautiously optimistic about the year ahead, as we believe dealmakers will continue to take the long view in a world where sitting on your hands and waiting for the volatility to die down is not an option. However as we identified 12 months ago there are still real threats to free trade and investment flows and there remains potential for a much more serious outbreak of protectionism and isolation that business, regulators and government must try and guard against.”