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Broadcom blow threatens to burst the M&A bubble

It has been the busiest first quarter ever for M&A announcements. Deal makers are becoming exuberant amid strong growth synchronized across the developed markets. But rising protectionism in the biggest M&A market of all could yet turn a banner year into one to forget. Should investment bankers fear the new Trump effect?

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Illustration: Morten Morland 

The typical investment banker working in mergers and acquisitions tends to be shrewd, considered and a little bit ruthless. You don’t rise up the ranks without becoming good at weighing all your clients’ strategic options with unemotional clarity; learning to roll with the blows in the heat of battle during contested takeovers; and adept at calmly persuading third parties – board directors, shareholders, analysts, regulators – round to your view of the rights and wrongs of a deal.

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