The fourth quarter of 2011 saw mining M&A activity stabilize and turn up from the low levels experienced in the third quarter. Activity levels were still not as strong as they were in the first half, although deal volume in Canada was about the same. Total transaction values increased even as metal prices and equity markets remained volatile, driven by a number of large transactions announced late in the quarter, particularly in Canada.
Despite the weaker second half, for the year 2011 as a whole, and considering only closed transactions, global mining M&A activity by value was significantly higher by about 50% to $100B compared to 2010. Canadian mining M&A activity was also much stronger during 2011, increasing by about 30% year-over-year to $34B.