Author: Gordon Platt

ANNUAL SURVEY: BEST INVESTMENT BANKS

Earnings from investment banking helped major financial institutions return to profitability, but the rules are changing.

By Gordon Platt

Awards-Best-Investment-Banks-2 Major banks reported hefty gains in first-quarter 2010 profits, with a powerful assist in most cases from their investment banking operations. Deutsche Bank's earnings rose 48% in the quarter from a year earlier. Record earnings at its investment bank accounted for more than 90% of the total. In the United States, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, J.P. Morgan and Goldman Sachs all reported solid gains from fixed-income trading that contributed greatly to better-than-expected earnings in the first quarter of 2010.


The value of worldwide mergers and acquisitions declined 28% last year to $2 trillion, making it the slowest year for the M&A; market since 2004, according to Thomson Reuters. M&A; activity in the US showed signs of strength in the first quarter of 2010, however, increasing 60% from a year earlier. If the global recovery stays on track and acquisition financing becomes more readily available, M&A; could contribute substantially to investment banking revenue this year.


There are plenty of reasons for bankers to be cautious, however. Regulatory reform is one of them. New regulations on over-the-counter derivatives, higher capital requirements and a new tax to fund bank rescues could cut significantly into future earnings. Meanwhile, the European debt crisis threatens to slow the global recovery.


Amid the uncertainties, the best investment banks continue to put the interests of their clients first and deliver first-rate capital raising and risk-management services. Global Finance once again is recognizing those financial institutions that are helping their customers to grow and succeed. The magazine's editors, with input from industry analysts, used a series of criteria to identify the best investment banks in a wide range of categories, by geography and sector.


Our selection criteria included market share, customer service and advice, deal-structuring capabilities, distribution network, and staff dedicated to investment banking. We also considered efforts to overcome difficult market conditions, pricing and after-market performance of underwritten securities, and market reputation.

GLOBAL WINNERS
Best Investment Bank
J.P. Morgan
Best Equity Bank
J.P. Morgan
Best Debt Bank J.P. Morgan
Best M&A; Bank
Morgan Stanley
Best Up-and-Comer
GulfMerger
Most Creative
Bank of America Merrill Lynch

DEALS OF THE YEAR

Best Equity Deal

Lead underwriters

Lloyd's Banking Group

$22.5 billion rights issue

Bank of America Merril Lynch, UBS Investment Bank,

Citi, Goldman Sachs, HSBC and J.P. Morgan Cazenova

Best Debt Deal

Lead Managers

$7 Billion Qatar bond

Credit Suisse, QNB Capital,Barclays Capital,

Goldman Sachs, and J.P. Morgan

Best M&A; Deal

Berkshire Hathaway-Burlington

Northern Santa Fe

Advising target Goldman Sachs

SESTOR WINNERS
Consumer Lazard
Financial Institutions
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Health Care Barclays Capital
Infrastructure Scotia Capital
Industrial/Chemicals J.P. Morgan
Media/Entertainment Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Metals & Mining BMO Capital Markets
Oil & Gas Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Power Morgan Stanley
Real Estate UBS Investement Bank
Technology

Barclays Capital

Telecom Credit Suisse

REGIONAL WINNERS
NORTH AMERICA
Best Investment Bank J.P. Morgan
Best Equity Bank J.P. Morgan
Best Debt Bank
J.P. Morgan
Best M&A; Bank Morgan Stanley
WESTERN EUROPE
Best Investment Bank Deutsche Bank
Best Equity Bank J.P. Morgan
Best Debt Bank Deutsche Bank
Best M&A; Bank Morgan Stanley
ASIA
Best Investment Bank Morgan Stanley
Best Equity Bank UBS Investement Bank
Best Debt Bank Nomura
Best M&A; Bank Morgan Stanley
CENTRAL & EASTERN EUROPE
Best Investment Bank Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Best Equity Bank Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Best Debt Bank J.P. Morgan
Best M&A; Bank Bank of America Merrill Lynch
NORDIC
Best Investment Bank Handelsbanken Capital Markets
Best Equity Bank Handelsbanken Capital Markets
Best Debt Bank DnB NOR
Best M&A; Bank Rothschild
LATIN AMERICA
Best Investment Bank Citi
Best Equity Bank Citi
Best Debt Bank Citi
Best M&A; Bank BTG Pactual
MIDDLE EAST
Best Investment Bank SambaCapital
Best Equity Bank SambaCapital
Best Debt Bank HSBC
Best M&A; Bank UBS Investment Bank
AFRICA
Best Investment Bank Standard Bank
Best Equity Bank RMB Morgan Stanley
Best Debt Bank Standard Bank
Best M&A; Bank J.P. Morgan

COUNTRY WINNERS
NORTH AMERICA

Canada Scotia Capital
United States
J.P. Morgan
EUROPE
France
BNP Paribas
Germany
Deutsche Bank
Italy Mediobanca
Netherlands ING
Portugal Caixa BI
Russia Troika Dialog
Spain Santander
Switzerland Credit Suisse
Turkey Garanti Securities
United Kingdom Barclays Capital
ASIA
Australia UBS Investment Bank
China/Hong Kong

China International

Capital Corporation (CICC)

India Kotak Mahindra Bank
Indonesia Mandiri Sekuritas
Japan Nomura
South Korea Samsung Securities
Taiwan Fubon Financial Holding
LATIN AMERICA
Argentina Citi
Brazil BTG Pactual
Mexico Citi
MIDDLE EAST
Bahrain Unicorn Investment Bank
Egypt EFG-Hermes
Israel HSBC Bank
Jordan Arab Bank
Kuwait NBK Capital
Lebanon BankMed
Oman BankMuscat
Qatar QNB Capital
Saudi Arabia SambaCapital
United Arab Emirates

Abu Dhabi Investment

Company (Invest AD)

AFRICA
Nigeria Standard Bank
South Africa Standard Bank

BEST LEGAL ADVISERS
Global Skadden
North America Skadden
Western Europe Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Asia Baker & McKenzie
Central & Eastern Europe Clifford Chance
Latin America Pinheiro Neto Advogado
Mddle East & Africa

Shearman & Sterling

By market:

Best Investment banks 2010: Global Winners

Best Investment banks 2010: Deals of the Year

Best Investment banks 2010: Sector Winners

Best Investment banks 2010: Regional Winners

Best Investment banks 2010: Country Winners

Best Investment banks 2010: Best Legal Advisers