Any comparisons this year to the extraordinary 2021 M&A market, with record levels of middle-market and global deal activity, was likely to be disappointing even without significant economic, political and social headwinds. First quarter 2022 M&A activity was down about 35.0% from the fourth quarter of last year with our preliminary 2Q22 data indicating a continued softness in the second quarter M&A activity as well. Record inflation, labor shortages, lingering supply chain issues and inflation combating interest rate increases are all taking their toll on the psyche of both the consumer and the business owner. Clearly, there is a growing lack of confidence in the country’s leadership and their ability to focus on the real issues that matter to the consumer and middle-market business owners.
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