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News Summary: Survey suggests pickup in global M&A

The Associated Press

BRACE YOURSELF: A survey of executives indicates growing optimism over the global economy is likely to lead to a marked pickup in the number of mergers and acquisitions over the coming months.

BIDING TIME: Since the financial crisis that started in 2007, many companies around the world pulled back on risky investments and sought to rebuild their finances. Paying down debt and rebuilding cash positions supplanted the pursuit of M&A deals.

REAWAKENING: In a report based on interviews with 1,600 executives worldwide, consulting firm Ernst & Young said Monday that it expects the volume and size of deals to rise over the coming year. It says 35 percent of companies surveyed are likely to pursue acquisitions, up from 25 percent a year ago. Active sectors are likely life sciences, oil & gas, automotive, consumer products and technology.