M&A activity in October 2018 remained mixed, but included more positive indicators compared to September and the general declining trend line so far this year. Deal volume by dollar value significantly increased overall, by 98.2% to $154.56 billion in the U.S., and by 35.5% to $328.77 billion globally. The number of deals, however, decreased slightly overall, by 2.6% to 371 in the U.S. (among the lowest levels since the beginning of this publication in 2012) and by 4.5% to 2,248 globally.
Strategic vs. Sponsor Activity
Reversing a more typical trend over the last year, strategic deals showed less strength than sponsor-related deals. The number of strategic deals decreased in October 2018 by 8.2% to 258 in the U.S. and by 5.6% to 1,981 globally. However, strategic volume by dollar value increased significantly by 146.5% to $107.52 billion in the U.S. and by 49.5% to $241.55 billion globally. Figure 1 and Annex Figures Figures 1A—4A. The number of sponsor-related deals, in contrast to the number of strategic deals, increased in the U.S. by 13% to 113 and globally by 4.3% to 267, and sponsor-related deal volume as measured by dollar value increased in the U.S. by 36.9% to $47.03 billion and globally by 7.5% to $87.22 billion. Figure 1 and Annex Figures Figures 1A—4A.
Globally, the number of crossborder deals increased by 5.7% to 592 while crossborder deal volume by dollar value decreased by 3.8% to $92.64 billion.
In the U.S., the number of crossborder deals decreased in October 2018. U.S. inbound transactions decreased by 2.7% to 72, and U.S. outbound transactions decreased by 6.0% to 94, each representing the second lowest level for such activity in the last 12-month period. U.S. crossborder activity as measured by dollar value was mixed, with inbound volume by dollar value increasing by 10.8% to $19.32 billion but U.S. outbound volume by dollar value decreasing by 73.5% to $6.68 billion. Figure 1 and Annex Figures 5A—7A.
Canada retained its lead for U.S. inbound activity by number of deals in the month of October (16) and over the last 12-month period (309). In addition, Canada was the leading country for U.S. inbound activity as measured by total dollar value in October ($4.75 billion) and retained its lead over the last 12-month period ($86.14 billion). The U.K. was again the leading destination country for U.S. outbound transactions by number of deals in October (27) and over the last 12-month period (282). Japan was the leading destination country for U.S. outbound activity by dollar value in October ($2.05 billion), with the U.K. retaining its lead over the last 12-month period ($89.75 billion). Figure 3.
U.S. Deals by Industry
Computers & Electronics remained the most active target industry by number of deals in October (97) and over the last 12-month period (2,251). Computers & Electronics was also the most active target industry by dollar value in October ($53.73 billion), as well as over the last 12-month period ($325.26 billion). Figure 2.
U.S. Public Mergers
As for U.S. public merger deal terms in October 2018, average target break fees were almost even with their 12-month average, at 3.7% (compared to a 12-month average of 3.8%), while average reverse break fees were slightly above their 12-month average, at 6.0% (compared to a 12-month average of 5.8%). Figures 6 and 7. Two transactions in October included a go-shop provision. Figure 8. The use of cash consideration in October decreased to 52.6% but remained above the 12-month average of 51.4%. Figure 9. Tender offers for U.S. public mergers in October (5.3%) fell significantly below the 12-month average (12.7%), and hostile/unsolicited offers in October (9.5%) also fell below the 12-month average (13.9%). Figures 11 and 12.
 Each metric in this publication that references deal volume by dollar value is calculated from the subset of the total number of deals that includes a disclosed deal value.