July 18, 2014 / 10:52 AM / 3 years ago

Value of worldwide mergers and acquisitions hits $2 trillion this year

LONDON (Reuters) - Worldwide mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity has reached $2 trillion so far this year, 75 percent higher than last year, according to Thomson Reuters weekly data, helped by a string of large-cap companies striking high value deals.

Eight deals valued at more than $5 billion were announced this week, setting an all-time record for weekly deal making among companies with a large market capitalization, Thomson Reuters said on Friday.

    The total value of deals over $5 billion hit $915.9 billion in the year to July 17, more than triple the level seen a year ago.

    One such deal came on Tuesday, when Camel cigarettes maker Reynolds American RAI.N said it would buy rival Lorillard LO.N for $26.8 billion. As part of the takeover, Britain’s Imperial Tobacco Group IMT.L bought a number of brands and assets from both companies for $7.1 billion.

    Imperial adviser Goldman Sachs (GS.N) ranked top in the M&A league tables, ahead of Morgan Stanley (MS.N) and Citi (C.N).

    Reporting by Clare Hutchison; Editing by Susan Fenton

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