While mergers and acquisitions among asset management companies were down significantly during the first half of 2009, many M&A experts predict this decline will flatten out or reverse by the end of the year, driven by renewed faith in the profitability of asset firms and banks' continued need to raise capital.

"Activity across financial services has decreased significantly because of the crisis, with asset management transactions down 35% by number," said Eric Weber, managing director and chief operating officer at Freeman & Co. "We expect financial industry deals to stay at these subdued levels as the industry plans how to compete in the future."

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