Transaction professionals are forecasting a strong year, betting that Republican control of the federal government will produce lower business taxes and fewer regulatory hurdles. While some areas of M&A may suffer in the transition of power, such as healthcare and cross-border deals, many sectors are expected to fare well under the new regime, especially energy and financial services.
Uncertainty about the U.S. election caused M&A to slow down in 2016, which failed to reach the heights of the previous two years, as the charts that follow demonstrate. But once the election ended, dealmaking picked up, making the fourth quarter the year’s best for M&A. December proved to be one of the most active months of the year, as buyers and sellers pushed to close deals before the year ended.