Added together, the value of 2015's M&A transactions is well over a record $4.5 trillion and could hit $5 trillion by the time the ball drops in Times Square. And the volume of transactions, is close to breaking the mark of 40,000 deals worldwide, as measured by Thomson Reuters.
But in spite of all the year's deal-making, investment bankers are relatively sober in their outlook as they anticipate popping the cork on 2016. That's because early indications are that 2015 will be the peak, with a slight decline coming next year in merger and acquisition volume.
A brand new Intralinks survey of 680 global M&A professionals dealmakers finds:
• Just under half — 48 percent — in North America, say they are optimistic about the current deal environment, a low figure considering this year's record. Globally, exactly half of the investment bankers are optimistic.
• Only 45 percent of North American investment bankers expect to participate in more deals during the first half of 2016 than during the prior 6 months. Worldwide, 49 percent of M&A pros anticipate a role in more deals during the coming 6 months.
• Investment bankers expect deal valuation will be the most difficult part of the M&A process, a reflection of the strong prices currently being paid to make acquisitions, with 45 percent anticipating valuations will remain flat through the end of the first half of 2016.