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Sat, 16 Jan 2021
17:41:00 +0000
Goldman Sachs Will Take Over GM's Credit-Card Business
Goldman Sachs will take over General Motors' credit-card business, the two companies said Friday. The New York investment firm will be the issuing bank for the Detroit automaker's credit-card programs, with the start of the program targeted for September. "We chose to partner with Goldman Sachs because of their proven ability to innovate," Chuck Thomson, GM's general manager of retail sales and marketing support, said in a statement.
Fri, 15 Jan 2021
16:06:10 +0000
Goldman Sachs to issue credit cards for General Motors
Goldman Sachs Group Inc said on Friday it expects to become the issuing bank for automaker General Motors Co's credit card business, starting September this year. Media reports in October said that Goldman had won the bidding over Barclays Plc for the automaker's credit card business in a $2.5 billion deal. Goldman and GM did not disclose the terms of the deal but said that Mastercard Inc will remain the network for the card.
Fri, 15 Jan 2021
14:27:29 +0000
Goldman Sachs to Take Over General Motors’ Credit-Card Business
(Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc. signed a deal to take over General Motors Co.’s credit-card portfolio.The Wall Street giant will be the issuer for the automaker’s credit-card programs, with a targeted start of September, the two companies said in a statement. Mastercard Inc. will remain the network for the cards. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.“We chose to partner with Goldman Sachs because of their proven ability to innovate,” Chuck Thomson, general manager of retail sales and marketing support at General Motors, said in the statement.Goldman Sachs has said it hopes to expand its portfolio of consumer loans to $20 billion in the coming years. As part of those efforts, it’s debuted a credit card with Apple Inc. and has even begun financing vacation purchases with JetBlue Airways Corp.General Motors, for its part, has been seeking a cheaper way to fund its auto-loan business. Last month, the carmaker’s finance arm formally submitted its application to form a so-called industrial loan company with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and Utah’s finance regulator.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Thu, 14 Jan 2021
21:00:22 +0000
Big Investment Banks To Report With Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley Up Next Amid Strong Trading, IPO Markets
Big investment banks could have a tough time matching their incredibly strong Q3 earnings performance when they report Q4 results next week. However, you could argue that the conditions leading to their muscular Q3 earnings spilled into Q4.An upsurge in capital markets trading activity and a very strong initial public offering (IPO) market could bode well for Q3 outperformers Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE: GS) and Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS). However, the more-consumer-oriented Bank of America Corp (NYSE: BAC) might face continued challenges, according to analysts' sagging estimates for the company.Though Monday is a holiday, the bank sector comes out swinging Tuesday morning when BAC and GS are expected to report. MS is expected to follow on Wednesday morning.Like the rest of 2020, Q4 probably was good for banks in one particular way: All the volatility in capital markets likely led to lots of trading activity. This could be a potential bright spot for banks like GS that have huge trading desks. Also, the market dynamics might provide a lift for the large wealth management business at MS. On the other hand, lagging economic data in Q4--including last week's tepid December employment report--could drag a consumer-focused company like BAC. Credit card activity in the consumer banking arena could remain under scrutiny, as it did in Q3, with job growth slowing and weekly new jobless claims staying steadily above 800,000 through most of Q4.One other possible worry is changes in Washington. Banks generally enjoyed a rollback of regulations under the current administration, but Democrats' sweep of the House, Senate and White House could mean a more active Treasury Department in coming years. On the other hand, expected Treasury leadership by President-elect Biden's choice--Janet Yellen--means bank executives will know who they're dealing with in coming months. Yellen led the Federal Reserve until early 2018.Brighter Times Could Be Ahead As Economy Improves Financial stocks had a rough 2020 but generally performed better in Q4. Over the last three months, the S&P 500 Financial sector is easily leading the S&P 500 Index (SPX) in market performance.The industry is slowly emerging from a worst-case scenario of low-interest rates, a struggling economy, and credit loss provisions the banks took to protect against potential loan defaults. All this hasn't vanished, but banks got good news last month when the Fed said they'd be allowed to resume stock buybacks. That's potentially one reason the sector's been doing better lately.Also, banks did well on their most recent round of Fed "stress tests," and could be at a point where there's less worry of loan defaults. This would become even more the case, maybe, if vaccinations start speeding up and investors could see beyond this almost year-long pandemic.The crisis hasn't been completely bad for banking firms' bottom lines. Consider that banks like GS, BAC, and MS all tend to benefit when the capital markets are energetic.Initial public offerings (IPOs) were another Q4 factor that might have helped these massive banks find a way to emerge from the thicket. Research firm FactSet said IPO activity "remained strong through the fourth quarter with 168 IPOs recorded. While fourth-quarter activity came in below the breakneck pace of the third quarter, companies raised an astounding $53.8 billion."Banks and their leaders generally did a great job managing through the crisis. Though they had to take massive protection against possible default--which crimped their profits--some analysts think banks actually might have gotten too cautious. That means there's a chance a lot of this reserve buildup could start winding down perhaps allowing profits to rebound more quickly than some had expected. The banks have also done well in cutting costs and branching into new businesses that expanded their customer base. Heading into earnings season--before several large banks reported last Friday--research firm CFRA projected overall S&P 500 Financial sector earnings to fall 7.8% year-over-year in Q4. That's an improvement on the firm's estimate for an overall 2020 Financial sector earnings loss of 22%, so perhaps things are improving. Looking forward, CFRA sees Financial earnings rising 17.8% in Q1.FIGURE 1: GETTING OUTPACED. Big bank stocks have been on a roll lately, but this chart shows that Goldman Sachs (GS--candlestick) is slightly outpacing Bank of America (BAC--purple line) over the last three months. This could partly reflect analysts' more potent earnings outlook for GS Q4 earnings compared with what they expect to see from BAC. Data Source: NYSE. Chart source: The thinkorswim® platform from TD Ameritrade. For illustrative purposes only. Past performance does not guarantee future results.Goldman Sachs Looks To Repeat Strong Q3 In Q3, GS posted its second consecutive strong quarter, bolstered by asset management and bond trading revenue. At the time, the company said, "Our ability to serve clients who are navigating a very uncertain environment drove strong performance across the franchise, building off a strong first half of the year." When GS reports Tuesday, investors are likely to look for any similar language in the press release related to Q4 conditions. Remember that Q3's strength in bond trading came despite a relatively dull Q3 for the bond market. Things actually got a bit more interesting in Q4 as bonds turned around their long rally and yields started ticking higher. Those rising yields could help banks in a number of ways, especially when it comes to net-interest income.GS has a huge trading business. We'll be looking for results from there and for any different outcomes between the fixed income and equity sides of the quarter. GS is second only to MS when it comes to the size of banks' trading shops, so these two could be well-positioned from a capital markets perspective if those businesses continued to sail along in Q4. Morgan Stanley Investors Eye Trading Revenue MS also outperformed Wall Street's expectations last time out, exceeding analysts' estimates in both wealth management and investment management. With MS, it's important to keep a close eye on trading results, and also to see if the company feels it's making strides in its growing IPO business. Also, investors will probably want to hear about Morgan Stanley's acquisition outlook, considering it's been a big acquirer lately. The firm has been shifting away from trading toward steadier, simpler businesses like money management. The company bought a large online brokerage firm last year that it said would significantly increase the "scale and breadth" of its wealth management business.That said, 2020 was a record year for bond issuance, and that conceivably could help MS (and GS). The health of the capital markets is often closely tied to the health of big investment banks like MS and GS, and it's no different now during the pandemic.Bank Of America Hoping To Rebound From Tough Q3 Looking specifically at BAC approaching Q4 earnings, one question centers around net-interest income. That measure of bank profitability fell by $2.1 billion in Q3 to $10.2 billion, BAC said. Its management said then that Q3 would likely be the bottom for net-interest income, so we'll see now if they were close to accurate with that prediction. Remember, BAC is often thought of as the big bank most exposed to interest rates due to its large base of deposits, so it probably has more to gain (or lose) than some of its rivals based on where rates go.Investors are also likely to keep an eye on BAC's commercial loan business, including credit cards, car loans, mortgage books, loans to industry, and personal loans. Business and consumer demand remains mixed, judging from recent economic data, and that could have implications.Q3 was a challenging quarter for BAC. The company missed Wall Street's average revenue estimate, though earnings per share did come in above analysts' projections. Trading results in the quarter were also less than stellar. Analysts aren't expecting a great earnings quarter from BAC this time around, but hopefully, some of the metrics can start bouncing back.TD Ameritrade® commentary for educational purposes only. Member SIPC. Options involve risks and are not suitable for all investors. Please read Characteristics and Risks of Standardized Options.Photo by Floriane Vita on UnsplashSee more from Benzinga * Click here for options trades from Benzinga * Delta, BlackRock Both Up Early On As Investors Cheer Earnings Results * Brighter Horizons? Big Banks Still Struggling As Q4 Earnings Approach, But Calmer Waters Seen(C) 2021 Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
Thu, 14 Jan 2021
12:30:00 +0000
Goldman teams up with fintech startup Marqeta to build checking accounts
Goldman Sachs has partnered with card issuing startup Marqeta to build the U.S. bank's Marcus checking accounts set to launch this year, the companies said on Thursday. The bank, an investor in California-based Marqeta, hopes that the partnership will enable it to create more personalized and feature-rich digital banking services for its customers, it said. Launched in 2016, Marcus has allowed Goldman to diversify its revenue and funding sources by offering savings accounts and personal loans to retail customers.
Thu, 14 Jan 2021
11:30:00 +0000
Goldman Sachs Inches Closer to Offering Marcus Checking Accounts
(Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is one step closer to offering checking accounts for Main Street consumers.The Wall Street giant will work with the digital-payments upstart Marqeta on the offering, which it will debut later this year, according to a statement Thursday. Marqeta Chief Executive Officer Jason Gardner said Goldman plans to use the firm’s technology to issue debit cards into mobile wallets, and for offerings that provide customers with real-time access to spending data.“You can instantly issue those cards into Apple Pay or Google Pay and it instantly gives consumers access to their funds,” he said in an interview.Goldman Sachs has so far been fairly tight-lipped on what the checking account might look like. In October, Visa Inc. announced it had won a deal to be the network for the digital account’s inaugural debit card.“Integrating with Marqeta’s platform will allow us to create a personalized, feature-rich banking experience for our checking customers,” Omer Ismail, global head of the consumer business at Goldman Sachs, said in the statement.For years, Goldman has been building out its consumer arm, which goes by the name of Marcus. Last year, the bank said it was seeking to gather $125 billion in consumer deposits with a goal of $700 million in pretax income from the business.Oakland, California-based Marqeta works with some of the world’s largest companies, promising speedier time to market for new credit cards and better controls on payments. The firm already counts Goldman Sachs as one of its early backers, and the bank’s underwriters are working with Marqeta on an upcoming initial public offering that could value the company at about $10 billion, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg last year.“What’s interesting about Goldman Sachs is they’re a very storied, longstanding bank and they’ve come out with Marcus which has done well in a relatively short period of time,” Gardner said. “This is just another true validation of our technology.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Wed, 13 Jan 2021
13:42:01 +0000
3 Goldman Sachs Mutual Funds For a Shining Portfolio
Below we share with you three top-ranked Goldman Sachs mutual funds. Each has a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank 1 (Strong Buy).
Tue, 12 Jan 2021
17:30:05 +0000
Goldman Sachs (GS) Earnings Expected to Grow: Should You Buy?
Goldman (GS) possesses the right combination of the two key ingredients for a likely earnings beat in its upcoming report. Get prepared with the key expectations.
Tue, 12 Jan 2021
12:00:12 +0000
Is GHYAX a Strong Bond Fund Right Now?
MF Bond Report for GHYAX
Mon, 11 Jan 2021
11:20:11 +0000
Should Goldman Sachs ActiveBeta U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF (GSSC) Be on Your Investing Radar?
Style Box ETF report for GSSC
Sun, 10 Jan 2021
14:43:26 +0000
Goldman, M. Stanley to delist some Hong Kong products after U.S. investment ban
Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan units will delist a total of 500 Hong Kong-listed structured products, Hong Kong stock exchange filings on Sunday showed. The delistings are because of statements last week by the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control clarifying a November order from President Donald Trump which banned Americans from investing in Chinese companies that the U.S. deems to have links with China's military, the filings said. Bourse operator Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing said in a statement it was "working closely with the relevant issuers to ensure orderly delisting, and facilitate buyback arrangements being arranged by the issuers."
Fri, 08 Jan 2021
13:02:20 +0000
Goldman Traders Score $2 Billion in Commodities’ Comeback Year
(Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s commodities traders doubled their revenue haul in 2020 -- another sign that Wall Street desks managed to print profits into the year’s finale, even as market mayhem subsided.Goldman’s business generated more than $2 billion in revenue for its best annual showing in about a decade, according to people with knowledge of the matter. That was a much needed redemption: The unit’s prowess once earned the bank the nickname “Wall Street Refiner,” but a prolonged slump in recent years was starting to raise doubts about the group’s future.The strong finish also bodes well for rivals ahead of earnings reports that will cap one of the most lucrative trading environments in banking history. Already, Jefferies Financial Group Inc., a bellwether for Wall Street, disclosed a 67% jump in net revenue for its fiscal year ending in November, raising the prospects of similar performances elsewhere.“Last year, amid unprecedented volatility, we stood by our clients, making markets and providing liquidity, financing and risk-management solutions,” Goldman spokeswoman Maeve DuVally said in a statement.Investment money is flooding back into commodities after years in the doldrums. Goldman’s analysts have cheered on the inflows, predicting a new commodity bull market to rival the China-driven boom of the 2000s and the oil-price spikes of the 1970s.The major share of the gains came from oil, which delivered stellar profits for traders on Wall Street and beyond in 2020. Crude first dipped into negative prices and back, and then staged a 35% rally in the last two months of the year.Collectively, investment banks set to report earnings in coming weeks probably generated the most from commodities in a decade. Trading houses such as Trafigura Group and Mercuria Energy Group Ltd. already have posted record profits. Hedge funds have enjoyed a strong run, too, with oil specialist Pierre Andurand’s main fund gaining 68.6% over the year and Ken Griffin’s Citadel making more than $1 billion from commodities.Goldman’s business had exceeded $1 billion in revenue through the first five months. But the additional windfall in the back half of the year defied some executives’ expectations.Disruptions wrought by the pandemic opened up opportunities beyond oil. For instance, in the gold market, fears over shutdowns of flights caused an unusual dislocation in prices between the two main hubs of London and New York, creating arbitrage opportunities.Goldman doesn’t publicly break out the results of its commodities division. The $2 billion revenue figure may not include some costs such as brokerage expenses, the people said. The firm’s global commodities-trading business last reached that mark in 2011, according to a U.S. Senate report on banks’ involvement in commodity markets and estimates compiled by Bloomberg.Still, the 2020 haul is dwarfed by the last commodity boom, when Goldman averaged more than $3 billion a year in annual revenue for the unit between 2006 and 2009. And while in the past Goldman was the clear leader among banks in commodities, it’s now regularly challenged by rivals for the top spot.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Thu, 07 Jan 2021
21:21:43 +0000
MOVES-Goldman Sachs names new co-heads for TMT group - memo
Goldman Sachs Group Inc has named veteran bankers Sam Britton and Matt Gibson to co-lead its global technology, telecom and media (TMT) franchise, according to an internal memo released on Thursday and seen by Reuters. Earlier on Thursday, the former head of global TMT, Nick Giovanni, announced he was leaving to become chief financial officer at delivery platform Instacart. Britton, a seasoned tech banker who has spent over 24 years at Goldman, has led some of the largest software deals in history, including Slack's $27.7 billion sale to Salesforce and IBM’s $34 billion purchase of Red Hat.
Thu, 07 Jan 2021
17:26:11 +0000
3 Big Dividend Stocks Yielding at Least 8%; Wells Fargo Says ‘Buy’
With the Georgia election behind us, and the Trump Administration on the way out, the near- to mid-term political landscape is growing clearer: The Biden Administration will be able to cater to its progressive base, now that it rests on majorities – however thin – in both Houses of Congress. Predictability is good for the markets, and we’re likely to have that, at least until 2022. Which makes this the time to lock in the defensive portfolio plays.The research analysts at Wells Fargo have been searching the markets for the ‘right’ buys, and their picks bear a closer look. They’ve been tapping high-yielding dividend payers as an investment play of choice.The TipRanks database sheds some additional light on three of the firm's picks – stocks with dividends yielding 8% or better.Apollo Investment Corporation (AINV)One good place to look for high return dividends is among the market’s business development companies. These companies offer specialty financing to the middle market, providing credit and funding for small to medium business customers who would otherwise have difficulty accessing capital markets.Apollo Investment is a typical example, with an investment portfolio valued at $2.59 billion. Apollo has investments in 147 companies, with average exposure of $15.9 million. The bulk of its portfolio, 86%, is first lien secured debt. Healthcare, business services, aviation and transport, and high-tech companies make up more than half of Apollo’s investment targets.In Q3CY20 (the company’s fiscal Q2 of 2021), Apollo posted an EPS of 43 cents per share, flat sequentially but down 18% year-over-year. The company boasted $268 million available liquid assets, and $287 million in available credit under its secured facility at the end of the quarter. Since then, Apollo has amended its revolving credit facility by extending maturity to December 2025.On the dividend front, Apollo has maintained its payments to regular shareholders despite the corona pandemic. Apollo’s most recent payment, in November, was s 31-cent regular dividend plus a 5-cent special dividend. The current yield is an impressive 11.6%.Covering AINV for Well Fargo, analyst Finian O’Shea noted, “Legacy’s impact has whittled away, adding just $3 million to the top line this quarter, for an annualized yield on FV of ~5.5%. We think there is very little downside to NOI from the legacy book, and view any realizations and re-deployments as a big positive to the stock.”O’Shea gives Apollo an Overweight (i.e. Buy) rating, and a price target which, at $12.50, implies a 12% upside from current levels. (To watch O’Shea’s track record, click here)Overall, Apollo has two reviews on record, and they are split – 1 Buy and 1 Hold – for a Moderate Buy consensus view. The stock is selling for $11.17, and its $11.50 average price target suggests a modest 3% upside. (See AINV stock analysis on TipRanks)Goldman Sachs BDC (GSBD)Next up, Goldman Sachs BDS, is the banking giant’s entry into the specialty finance business development segment. GSBD is a subsidiary of Goldman, and focuses on mid-market companies, providing closed-end management investment services and middle-market credit access.GSBD’s share performance in 2020 showed a steady rebound from the initial recession caused by the corona crisis last winter. By year’s end, the stock was trading its January 2020 levels.In November, the company felt confident enough to price an offering of $500 million in unsecured notes, at interest of 2.875% and due in January 2026. The funds raised will be used to pay down the revolving credit facility, improving interest on existing debt.Also in November, GSBD reported 80 cents EPS for the quarter ending September 30. The earnings were strong enough to support a solid dividend of 45 cents per share – and the company announced a special dividend payment, of 15 cents, to be paid in three installments during 2021. The regular dividend currently has a yield exceeding 9%.Among the bulls is Wells Fargo's Finian O’Shea, who also covers AINV. The analyst wrote, "[We] believe the high-quality investment platform and shareholder friendly structure will continue to drive attractive forward returns… GSBD is quality at a good price... For those who buy BDCs, GSBD will likely always be in the portfolio discussion as we see it, given its quality of earnings and shareholder orientation.”With that in mind, O’Shea rates GSBD an Overweight (i.e. Buy), along with a $19.50 price target. This figure implies a 5% upside from current levels. (To watch O’Shea’s track record, click here)Once again, this is a stock with an even split between Buy and Hold reviews, making for a Moderate Buy analyst consensus rating. The shares are priced at $18.59 and the average price target of $19.50 matches O’Shea’s. (See GSBD stock analysis on TipRanks)ExxonMobil (XOM)From BDCs we’ll move on to the oil industry. Exxon Mobil is one of Big Oil’s players, with a market cap of $190 billion and 2019 revenues (the last year for which full-year figures are available) of $264.9 billion. The company produces approximately 2.3 billion barrels of oil equivalent daily, putting it in the top five of global hydrocarbon producers.Low prices in 2H19, and the corona crisis in 1H20, drove revenues down in the first part of last year – but that reversed in Q3 when XOM reported $45.7 billion at the top line. While down year-over-year, this was up 40% sequentially.Despite all of the headwinds facing the oil industry over the past 18 months, XOM has kept its dividend reliable, and paid out the most recent distribution in December 2020. That payment was 87 cents per regular share, annualizing to $3.48 and giving a yield of 8.4%.In a note on the big oil companies, Wells Fargo’s Roger Read writes, “In 2021, we expect more supportive macro tailwinds, but realize significant challenges exist and maintain an average Brent price below $50…”Switching his view to XOM in particular, the analyst adds, “We do not expect production growth and only minimal free cashflow generation, which is inclusive of disposition proceeds. However, this represents a significant change from the last several years of significant cash burns and increased leverage. In our view, this is likely enough to lift the shares a bit higher and lessen worries about dividend sustainability.”In light of his comments, Read rates XOM shares an Overweight (i.e. Buy), and his $53 price target indicates room for 17% upside growth in the coming year. (To watch Read’s track record, click here)That Wall Street still views the energy industry with a cautious eye is clear from XOM’s analyst consensus rating -- Hold. That is based on 10 reviews, including 3 Buys, 6 Holds, and 1 Sell. The shares are selling for $45.15, and their $47.33 average price target suggests a modest upside of ~5% (See XOM stock analysis on TipRanks)To find good ideas for dividend stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights.Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analysts. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.
Thu, 07 Jan 2021
17:00:05 +0000
Goldman Sachs (GS) Is Up 2.95% in One Week: What You Should Know
Does Goldman Sachs (GS) have what it takes to be a top stock pick for momentum investors? Let's find out.
Thu, 07 Jan 2021
13:39:00 +0000
Why Goldman Sachs Stock Jumped 11.9% in December
Shares of Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) rose 11.9% in December, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence. A number of positive things happened for Goldman during December, some specific to the company, and others that were pertinent to the banking sector as a whole. Specifically, Goldman landed two of the hottest privately owned unicorns as customers and partners in December.
Thu, 07 Jan 2021
12:15:00 +0000
2 Dividend Stocks to Supplement Your Social Security
There are many different building blocks in a good retirement plan. Then there's Social Security, which most eligible recipients begin to access between the ages of 62 and 70. It's also smart to have other investments, in savings vehicles like mutual funds, ETFs, and stocks, as additional building blocks to ensure you have the financial resources you need.
Tue, 05 Jan 2021
16:37:00 +0000
Goldman CEO David Solomon Expects Employees Back in Office by Year End
Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon expects the distribution of the coronavirus vaccine to allow employees of the investment and commercial bank to return to their offices by the end of the year. "The big focus right now is we've got to get people vaccinated -- we've got to get to the other side," Solomon told Bloomberg Television Tuesday. The executive expressed cautious optimism about the vaccine's rollout, despite the U.S. only distributing about a tenth of the 20 million doses so far that President Donald Trump said would be administered by the end of 2020.
Tue, 05 Jan 2021
13:33:01 +0000
Is Goldman (GS) Stock a Solid Choice Right Now?
Goldman (GS) has seen solid earnings estimate revision activity over the past month, and belongs to a strong industry as well.
Mon, 04 Jan 2021
12:00:00 +0000
Goldman Holds On as Top Canadian M&A Adviser in Slow Deals Year
(Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc. held on as the top adviser for mergers and acquisitions in Canada for the third straight year, making the most of a sluggish time for dealmaking.Goldman advised on 24 announced deals involving Canadian companies with a combined value of $50 billion, according to 2020 data compiled by Bloomberg. The total value of all Canadian acquisitions announced was $204.2 billion, the lowest since 2013. The rankings and data are as of Dec. 31 and may change as more deals are recorded. Goldman was last year’s top M&A adviser globally as well.While Covid-19 broke or delayed many transactions that had been in the works around the world, activity has since returned to more normal levels. But the recovery has been slower in Canada, partly due to the country’s preponderance of resource companies, which require in-person site visits and due diligence prevented by travel restrictions and social distancing, said Luke Gordon, head of Canadian M&A for Goldman Sachs.The deals that were struck have been helped by the flood of liquidity pumped into the market by central banks, which has pushed buyers’ cost of capital down to historically low levels, supporting higher valuations, Gordon said in an interview.“The concentric circles of buyer willingness to pay and seller expectations are overlapping in a way that they don’t always do,” he said.Goldman’s lead on the league table was bolstered by large transactions that involved non-Canadian companies. Those included Intact Financial Corp.’s $9.4 billion takeover of London-based RSA Insurance Group Plc’s Canadian, U.K. and international operations, and New York-based Insight Partners’ $5 billion acquisition of Switzerland’s Veeam Software from a consortium led by Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.“One of the trends that we’re seeing in Canada is a great proportion of cross-border deals,” Gordon said. “That plays to our strengths.”Following Goldman were Morgan Stanley, with 24 deals valued at $45.4 billion, and Bank of America Corp., with 19 deals valued at $38.8 billion.Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce came in fifth, its highest ranking since 2011, with 27 deals valued at $29.6 billion. Notable acquisitions the firm advised on include the Intact-RSA deal, Northview Apartment Real Estate Investment Trust’s C$2.32 billion ($1.81 billion) sale to a group led by KingSett Capital Inc., and Cenovus Energy Inc.’s all-stock acquisition of Husky Energy Inc., which was valued at about $2.9 billion when it was announced in October.CIBC ReboundThe rebound in CIBC’s league-table standing is the result of six years of work to build experience and continuity in the investment-banking unit, and to provide a consistent team of bankers that clients can turn to when considering an acquisition, said Roman Dubczak, head of global investment banking. This year may see heightened M&A activity in asset-intensive sectors such as natural resources, real estate and renewable energy, he said in an interview.“The renewable-energy sector is one where there’s quite a bit of expansion and consolidation going on,” Dubczak said.The broader merger market should be strong as well, both in industries performing well and those facing challenges and turning to deals to enhance their scale, according to Mike Boyd, CIBC’s head of global M&A. Underpinning all that activity will be a solid economic rebound, he said in an interview.“As the progress kicks in with respect to the vaccine, and as things normalize, particularly as we get toward the back half of the year, we should see a very strong economy,” Boyd said. “That’s going to help propel M&A activity.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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