A good article can be found here which discusses the rates and trends of private equity buyouts of public companies. The article notes that several firms have failed to find buyers over the last month, including Bally Total Fitness (BFT):
Jones Apparel Group Inc., Bally Total Fitness Holding Corp., The Pep Boys -- Manny, Moe & Jack and Imclone Systems Inc. all halted their auctions last month after not getting the bids they wanted.
However, in spite of these cases, the aggregate quantity has been increasing:
To date, global M&A volumes have totaled $2.4 billion, up some 34 percent from this time last year, according to industry research firm Dealogic.
With regard to the multiples that buyers are paying:
Valuations for companies with $50 million or more in annual earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, or Ebitda, hit 8.6 times Ebitda during the first half of the year, the highest level ever recorded by Standard & Poor's Leveraged Commentary and Data Group.