Cheap debt and institutional investors looking for higher-yield investments has led to a glut of takeover deals, rivalling the value of European IPOs in recent months.
The availability of debt has pushed the total value of company takeovers close to that of IPOs on European stock markets.
Some $30.8bn (£23.2bn)-worth of companies were bought out in the last year, while $34.5bn of new money was raised on European stock markets, according to figures from Dealogic.
The differential is the closest it has been since more risky bonds and loans were popular in 2008. Some €85bn (£75.9bn) of leveraged loans have been taken out in Europe during the first three quarters of 2017, compared with €71bn throughout the whole of 2016.
The FT reports that pensions funds are among those driving this boom in buyo
For thoughtful journalism, expert insights on corporate governance and an extensive library of reports, guides and tools to help boards and directors navigate the complexities of their roles, subscribe to Board Agenda