Macquarie CEO Says Deal Volumes Rising as Confidence Returns

Macquarie CEO Says Deal Volumes Rising as Confidence Returns

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(Bloomberg) — The pace of merger and acquisitions is picking up as global markets’ confidence returns and the path for interest rates becomes clearer, Macquarie Group Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Shemara Wikramanayake said.

Opening the bank’s Australian investment conference in Sydney, Wikramanayake was upbeat about the economic and investment outlook. She told delegates that the period of caution when people sat out of the market is starting to end. Global economic growth has weathered the worst of the inflation shock and has proved to be “resilient,” Wikramanayake said. 

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US central bankers left their benchmark rate unchanged last week, while Australia’s central bank will also likely keep its key interest rate at a 12-year high on Tuesday.  

“While we don’t know the pace at which central banks are going to start cutting rates, the fact is that we are getting more confidence and certainty on where rates are going,” she said. “That’s giving the market more confidence. All the US banks have reported their pipelines picking up. We’re certainly seeing that as well.”

Shares in Macquarie climbed 1.3% to A$189 at 10:25 a.m. in Sydney trading. The stock is up 2.9% this year.

“There’s a lot of liquidity waiting to participate,” she said. 

Read More: RBA Seen Keeping Key Rate at 12-Year High as Inflation Stirs

The Sydney-based bank has become one of North America’s largest energy traders, and said this month that it is aiming to grow its highly profitable commodities trading business beyond the US and further into Asia and Europe. Wikramanayake said in her speech Tuesday that “transition fuels” such as gas will play a key role in global decarbonization.

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(Updates stock gain in the fifth paragraph and comment on liquidity from CEO in the sixth.)

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