M&A numbers hit five-year low

The latest figures on merger and acquisitions from the
Office of National
(ONS) show acquisition in the UK by UK companies in Q1 2008 fell
to 115 – the lowest level since the first quarter of 2008.

Ken Williamson,
& Young
UK Head of mergers and acquisitions, said the figures painted a
very clear picture of the impact of the credit crunch in the UK.

‘The lack of credit available to finance transactions is having a big impact
on general M&A activity. A bigger factor is that the credit crunch has
undermined economic confidence and slowed decision making down, virtually to a
halt in many cases,’ he said.

‘We are seeing a hiatus of M&A in 2008 because of the tightness in the
debt market adding to the nervousness of business leaders who are just not sure
whether the next move for values is up or down.’

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