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Global equity and debt issuance both popped in 2023, hitting two-year highs, according to new data from LSEG Data & Analytics.

Equity capital market activity rose by 7% on a year-over-year basis to US$528.5 billion. Deal volume was up 7% from the previous year, with 4,745 new issues.

The rise in global equity issuance was led by secondary offerings, which were up 17% to US$322.8 billion, amid a 12% increase in deal numbers.

This offset a decline in the global initial public offering (IPO) market, which saw the value of deals decline 24% year over year to its lowest level since 2009 (US$112.5 billion), LSEG reported.

At the same time, the value of global convertible offerings was up 34% from the previous year to US$93.2 billion, it said.

By region, U.S. markets continued to lead the way in 2023, with equity issuance jumping 62% year over year. Yet this was tempered by a 33% decline in activity from China-based companies, and a 25% drop for the rest of the Asia Pacific region.

LSEG also reported that global equity capital raising was down 9% in the fourth quarter, even as the number of new issues rose by 5% from the previous quarter.

Goldman Sachs reclaimed top spot in the global rankings for equity underwriters, with JP Morgan taking second place, and BofA Securities Inc. in third. Morgan Stanley ranked fourth, and Citi was fifth.

The top firm in 2022, CITIC, dropped all the way to sixth place, as deal activity in China dropped.

RBC Capital Markets held on to 17th place in the global equity league tables, and was the only Canadian firm in the global top 25.

On the debt side, global issuance was up 6% year over year in 2023 to US$8.9 trillion, LSEG also reported. The increase in deal value came as the number of deals rose 8% from 2022.

The overall value of investment grade corporate debt offerings increased by 5% in 2023 to US$4.3 trillion — however, issuance was down 20% in the fourth quarter.

New issuance of high yield debt spiked by 66% during the year to US$219.2 billion, LSEG reported, and green bond issuance was also up by 10% in 2023 to US$422.3 billion.

Governments and the financial sector continue to dominate global debt activity, accounting for 78% of total issuance. The consumer product, media and entertainment, and energy and power sectors, as well as consumer staples all saw strong gains in debt issuance, it noted.

As with equity markets, global debt issuance decreased in the fourth quarter, dropping 15% compared to the third quarter.

JP Morgan remained atop the global debt underwriter rankings for 2023, followed by BofA Securities Inc., and Citi. Barclays took fourth place and Morgan Stanley was fifth, climbing one spot each in the global league tables. Goldman Sachs dropped from fourth place in 2022 to ninth spot in 2023.

RBC Capital Markets was the top-ranked Canadian firm in 15th place, up from 18th in 2022. TD Securities Inc. also made the top 25, ranking 22nd in 2023, up from 25th place in 2022.