A growing sense of hope, even as job fears remain by ProQuest

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									Survey: Downturn driving discounts on distressed assets
             By martin c. dakS                              “With a variety of factors contributing to an                  private-sector transactions during the next year.                       to execute an M&A, respondents said. Most of the
OVERLEVERAGED BALANCE sheets and neg-                 increased volume of distressed opportunities,                             Debt and equity investors “are becom-                              distressed companies in those industries will try
ative cash flows spurred by the recession are         both buyers and sellers are expected to eagerly                      ing increasingly unwilling or unable to grant                           to solve their issues outside of court, but Chapter
leading to steep discounts on distressed assets,      pursue deals, as each side stands to gain unique                     extended grace periods, with cash flow being                            11 reorganizations are expected to be “extremely
opening up merger and acquisition opportuni-          benefits,” said Jim Rosener, managing partner                        further negatively impacted by increased rates                          common” over the next year, and could trigger
ties, according to a new national survey.             at Pepper Hamilton LLP’s New York office. His                        and accelerated maturities,” said Duff Meyer-                           more in-court settlements.
      Ninety-two percent of survey respondents        law firm and New York-based Carl Marks Advi-                         cord, a partner at Carl Marks.                                                The current market is “characterized by
believe the current economic downturn is driv-        sory Group LLC commissioned Mergermarket                                  An inability to service existing debt, refi-                       people having to do something, and forced to do
ing steep discounts on distressed assets, com-        Ltd. to conduct the survey.                                          nance upcoming maturities and negative cash                             it on a tight timetable,” said Rosener, of Pepper
pared to previous slowdowns, according to the               Fifty-six percent of the respondents sur-                      flow are the top issues companies will face in                          Hamilton. “There is an increased opportunity
Distressed M&A Outlook report, which inter-           veyed have been involved in a distressed asset                       the coming year, according to the survey.                               [for M&A activity] as management loses focus
viewed investment bankers, private equity prac-       sale in the past year. Of the remainder, some                             Real estate and financial services will likely                     and interest over these orphaned businesses.” u
titioners, hedge-fund investors and lawyers.          expect to get involved in foreclosure sales, and                     provide the best bargains for companies looking                                                      E-mail to mdaks@njbiz.com




A growing sense
of hope, even as
job fears remain
             By Beth fitzgerald
FEAR OF LOSING a job is prompting higher
savings by New Jerseyans, but there’s a surge
of optimism that they will be better off a year
from now, according to the quarterly economic                                         new jersey                                                                                   new delhi
survey by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Sil-
berman College of Business.
       While a majority — 59 percent — said they
are worse off now than they were a year ago,
only a third think they’ll be worse off a year
from now, and 45 percent expect to be better
off a year from now.
       The telephone survey of 716 randomly
selected New Jersey adults was conducted
between June 22 through June 28, and the
quarterly poll is sponsored by Silberman Col-
lege and conducted by FDU PublicMind.
       Layoffs are casting a wide shadow across                           Is your life bigger than your bank?
the state: 63 percent of survey respondents say-
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