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M&A activity down 40 per cent

Global mergers &amp; acquisitions activity stands at $752bn (&pound;463bn) this year so far in a 40 per cent decrease on the same period in 2008, according to Thomson Reuters research. The decline, the slowest start to a year since 2003, underlines the impact of the lack of debt availability. Fees for transactions, on which the investment banking industry depends, stand at $6.7bn (&pound;4bn) so far in 2009 &ndash; a 58 per cent decline on the same period last year.<br />