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Weinberg Tells CNBC He Sees U.S. Leading M&A Rebound This Year

Peter Weinberg, co-founder of closely held investment bank Perella Weinberg Partners LP, said that he expects U.S. companies to lead a rebound of mergers and acquisitions.

Firms under pressure from shareholders to increase their growth prospects will try to do so by acquiring companies in emerging markets as well as in the U.S. and Europe, Weinberg said today in an interview on CNBC.

“We feel pretty strongly that there’s going to be a U.S.- led resurgence of M&A activity later this year,” Weinberg said. “The U.S. is becoming, on a relative basis, quite strong.”

Boutique investment banks like Perella Weinberg, which specialize in providing advice to corporations and don’t engage in the sales and trading activities that dominate larger banks, are poised to increase their total share of investment-banking revenue to 20 percent in the next three to five years from 10 percent currently, Weinberg said.

Weinberg, who was on the management committee of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. before starting Perella Weinberg with Joseph Perella in 2006, said he’s “not sure I’d do anything really differently” if he was running Goldman Sachs now.

Weinberg’s grandfather Sidney J. Weinberg and his uncle John L. Weinberg were previous heads of Goldman Sachs. His father Sidney J. Weinberg Jr. worked at the firm and his cousin John S. Weinberg is on the management committee at Goldman Sachs.

Goldman Sachs was criticized last week by Delaware Chancery Court Judge Leo Strine for its handling of the New York-based firm’s conflict of interest in advising El Paso Corp. on a sale to Kinder Morgan Inc. even though Goldman Sachs owned about 20 percent of Kinder Morgan.

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