Morgan Stanley, Barclays top Canadian M&A adviser rankings in 2016

Thu Jan 5, 2017 7:09am EST
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By John Tilak and Matt Scuffham

NEW YORK/TORONTO (Reuters) - Morgan Stanley, Barclays Plc and Royal Bank of Canada took the top spots advising Canadian mergers and acquisitions in 2016 as deals in the pipeline, power and utility sectors propelled deal volume to a nine-year high.

Deal value climbed 8.3 percent to $250.7 billion last year, from 2015 levels, according to data released by Thomson Reuters.

A number of large transactions, including Enbridge Inc's planned acquisition of Spectra Energy Corp for about $28 billion and a proposed merger between fertilizer producers Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Inc and Agrium Inc, drove deal activity to the second strongest year on record, after 2007.

Other major deals – such as TransCanada Corp's acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group, Fortis Inc's acquisition of ITC Holdings – involved Canadian companies looking outside the country for growth. That often meant south of the border.

"Canadian investors are once again focused on the United States, and this will be an overarching theme in 2017," said Bruce Rothney, chief executive of Barclays Canada.

“The Trump presidency – and with it the promise of reforms in regulation, taxation and infrastructure spending – will accelerate activity in 2017/18," he said.

In the rankings, JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs and Bank of Montreal rounded out the top six. Among Canadian banks, RBC, BMO and CIBC were the top advisers. RBC also advised on the highest number of transactions.

A pickup in mining M&A and a steady stream of energy deals ensured that the resource sectors found their footing this year.   Continued...

The logo of Morgan Stanley is seen at an office building in Zurich, Switzerland September 22, 2016.  REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo