Forging ahead is a quarterly analysis of global merger and acquisition (M&A) activity in the metals industry. It includes a review of overall deal activity for the quarter and year-to-date and a summary of large deals.
Highlights of what this quarter's analysis revealed:
Despite a stronger fourth quarter, the year overall saw a decline of more than 26 percent in deal value compared to 2013.
We saw an increase in deals by financial investors in 2014, driven by strong activity in the fourth quarter. If this activity continues, we may see an improvement in deal activity.
Deal activity continues to be driven by activity in Asia and Oceania, and China's consolidation efforts played a large part in this.
Deal volume in emerging and developing economies grew as a proportion of activity in 2014, to 58 percent.
While excess capacity remains a concern, particularly in the steel segment, steel pricing improved in 2014 and is expected to continue to increase in 2015.