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ONS reports rise in acquisitions during Q4 2011

Official statistics have shown a rise in UK acquisition activity during the fourth quarter of 2011.

07 March 2012

Merger and acquisition consultants could have been in high demand during the fourth quarter of 2011, data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has indicated.

Foreign companies spent £11.7 billion in the UK on attempts to purchase enterprises during this period, compared with a figure of £5.2 billion over the previous three months.

This represents the highest amount of money seen in the inward acquisitions market since July to October 2010.

Furthermore, in the third quarter of 2011, UK firms spent £6.8 million buying overseas organisations, but in the following three months this rose to £12 billion.

There was a slight growth in expenditure on domestic acquisitions, rising from £1.3 billion in the third quarter to £1.4 billion in the final quarter.

Ollie Beckett, fund manager of TR European Growth Trust PLC, recently said: "2012 does offer hope for equity markets with the backdrop of low interest rates, quantitative easing, the likelihood of increasing mergers and acquisitions, strong corporate balance sheets and attractive valuations."

Posted by Edel Quinn

Source: ONS press release, March 6th

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