Gas flaring. Torch against the sky.
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At the nine-month mark, global merger-and-acquisition (M&A) activity has already set a full-year record, according to a new report from Refinitiv.

So far this year, there’s been US$4.4-trillion worth of global M&A activity, topping the previous full-year record of US$4.3 trillion, set in 2015.

Deal value so far this year surged by 92% from the same period last year, and the volume of deals is up 28% from 2020.

The third quarter also set a record, with US$1.6-trillion worth of deal making.

The value of private equity–backed M&A transactions more than doubled from last year to US$839.6 billion, Refinitiv reported.

At the same time, transactions involving special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) totalled US$545.8 billion so far this year.

Cross-border M&A activity also effectively doubled from last year to US$1.6 trillion, led by the tech, industrial and financial sectors, which accounted for 43% of cross-border deals, up from 35% last year.

Overall, deals involving tech companies totalled US$888.2 billion during the first nine months of 2021, which is more than double the total in 2020.

Financial and industrial sector deals jumped by about 80% from last year.