Reuters – Investment banking fees in the Middle East grew 20% last year, data compiled by Thomson Reuters showed, as capital markets activity continued to recover gradually from the global financial crisis.
Total fees rose to $722m in 2013, the highest since 2010, from $603m in 2012 – though they were still only about half of their 2007 record high of over $1.4bn.
Fees from completed mergers and acquisitions (M&A) climbed 22% to $213m, as the value of announced M&A deals with any Middle Eastern involvement rose 7% to $43.4bn.
M&A flows into the Middle East edged down 3% to $6.1bn. Egypt was the most popular target for foreign acquirers, accounting for over two-thirds of M&A inflows, while China provided over half of flows into the region.
Outbound M&A from the Middle East – defined as the Gulf, Levant countries and Egypt, but not including other North African states – increased 11%to $14.8bn.
The data showed that despite last year’s sharp rise of share prices in the Gulf, stock market activity has not come close to recovering from the crisis: Middle Eastern companies raised just $4.2bn in 2013, down 39% from 2012, because of an 80% drop in follow-on share offers.
Debt issuance in the region throughout 2013 totalled $38.6bn, little changed from the 2012 level of $38.8bn.