Was it all a bad dream?
A busy 2011 might have left mergers and acquisitions lawyers wondering whether the Great Recession was just a plot device in Margin Call. Global M&A activity rose to $2.2 trillion in 2011, making it the strongest year since 2008, mergermarket reports. The picture was even rosier in the United States, which had $820.6 billion in deals; here, it was the strongest year since 2007. Energy, mining, and utilities work was especially robust, as was cross-border deal making.
Worldwide project finance work hit new peaks, with 945 deals closing in 2011, up 8 percent from 2010, according to Dealogic. Total value rose 13 percent, to $405 billion. Left out of the sunny scenarios: capital markets lawyers, who saw proceeds from global equity capital markets work fall 28 percent from 2010. For these attorneys, it turned out, 2011 was more like Groundhog Day.
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