Happy New Year from a very snowy New York. Overall, analysts seem positive about M&A in 2013. While there were many legal challenges and changes, merger activity ended on a high note. Thanks to increased confidence, favorable lending environments, and a rising IPO market, 2014 begins on a strong footing.

Despite the increased activity, private equity firms have accumulated $1.074 trillion in dry powder — more than they had in 2008. Is most of the capital still sitting on the sidelines, or is fundraising outpacing activity?

In other news, Joe Lieberman joins Victory Park Capital, Stryker acquired Patient Safety Technologies, and Neogen acquires Chem-Tech.

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Thanks to spirit of america for the photo.