Great Britain Surpasses U.S. In Foreign Mergers

Compiled by Michael A. Verespej For the first time since 1995, the U.S. is not the world leader in global merger mania. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in Paris says that Great Britain accounted for one-third of the world's merger and acquisition value in 1999 as British firms spent US$246 billion to acquire foreign companies. U.S. companies spent the next highest amount, $145 billion. The OECD says that the number of cross-border mergers jumped 50% to more than 5,000 in 1999, with the U.S. remaining the most popular place to find an acquisition. Other countries spent $293 billion to buy U.S. firms. The second biggest target country: Great Britain, where $123 billion was spent.

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