JPMorgan Chase unseated Goldman Sachs as the world’s top mergers and acquisitions adviser throughout the first half of 2023, according to data from Bloomberg.
JPMorgan has advised on $284 billion worth of deals during the year’s first six months, compared with $237.1 billion for Goldman, the wire service reported Thursday. That gives JPMorgan a 22.5% market share, compared with Goldman’s 18.8%.
It marked the first time in five years that Goldman failed to top the M&A adviser rankings over a half-year period. Morgan Stanley outpaced Goldman in the first six months of 2018, but Goldman surpassed its rival in that year’s second half to win the year.
Goldman’s six-month slump comes amid a 42% decline in M&A volume so far this year — to $1.3 trillion.
And the deals announced thus far this year have tended to be smaller, Valeriya Vitkova, a senior lecturer at the City University of London, told Bloomberg.
“We have seen a structural shift in the type of M&A deals that get announced,” Vitkova said. “It would be interesting and important to see whether this is a sustained drop over the coming months and years or whether this is just a temporary shift.”
Another trend: Specialty shops like Guggenheim Partners and Centerview Partners have gained the most ground among the top 10 advisers. Guggenheim jumped 48 places to rank ninth, advising on $61.8 billion in deals, Bloomberg found. Centerview rose nine spots to rank fifth, with $128 billion. Each had a role in the year’s largest deal, pharma behemoth Pfizer’s $43 billion acquisition of drugmaker Seagen. Guggenheim advised the former; Centerview, the latter.
Rounding out the top 10: Bank of America rose one spot to third, advising on $200.1 billion in deals. Morgan Stanley fell one place, to fourth, with $177.3 billion. UBS stood pat at sixth, with $103.9 billion. Citi fell two spots to seventh, counting $82.7 billion. Wells Fargo remained in eighth place, advising on $69 billion. And Lazard dropped one slot to 10th, with $59.4 billion.
The industrywide M&A slide has played a factor in Goldman’s decision to reduce its headcount three times since September. More than one-third of the 3,200 employees the bank cut in the largest round — in January — were said to come from within its core trading and banking units. The bank last week cut roughly 125 managing directors.
Goldman’s investment-banking revenue fell 26% during 2023’s first quarter, compared with the first three months of the previous year, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Representatives from Goldman and JPMorgan declined to comment to Bloomberg.