- “The tone among key decision makers - CEOs, CFOs and then, most importantly, board members - is markedly more positive today than it was a year ago," says Morgan Stanley (MS) global co-head of investment banking Mark Eichorn, whose firm finished in 3rd place in Bloomberg's ranking of investment bank fees in 2013.
- Debt and equity issuance gained 4.9% to an estimated $53.4B last year, the highest since 2007, but well below the $86.9B of that bubbly year.
- Leading the way again is JPMorgan (JPM), which raked in $3.87B in fees last year. Second place again went to Goldman Sachs (GS) with $3.77B, and third (again) to Morgan with $3.71B. The three have held the top three spots since 2009.
- This year is off to a strong start thanks to the Comcast/TWC deal and the rise in the activist investor could mean more business for the bankers who advise boards and managements.
- "The big difference this year is the absence of big macro crises,” says BAML's Christian Meissner, whose firm finished 4th with $3.52B. “Maybe something will pop up and change that view. But we’re seeing the green shoots of recovery and the absence of significant tail risk.”