Robert Chu and Wally Jones Quoted in Asian Legal Business Special Report on State of U.S. Law Firms in Tough Economic ClimateAugust 9, 2011
Mr. Chu and Mr. Jones were extensively quoted in an Asian Legal Business special report titled, “USA 2011: White Shoes, Debt and Economy Blues,” which was published on August 9. The article explored the state of U.S. law firms in light of the struggling national economy.
“The market is still choppy but there have been a number of large transactions in the last six to nine months,” Mr. Chu told ALB. “We’re starting to see the return of transactions that make strategic sense – but we’re not quite seeing the $30 billion, $40 billion leveraged buyouts.” Mr. Jones pointed to the impact of the Dodd-Frank Act, saying “financial industry players are reluctant to make a lot of significant business decisions until the specific Dodd-Frank regulations have been settled.” However, he also observed that, like the Sarbanes-Oxley Act before it, the Dodd-Frank Act has generated work for many Wall Street law firms advising financial services clients on compliance issues.
The article also reported that S&C was among a number of “top U.S. firms” to establish local Hong Kong practices in the past year. Mr. Chu attributed the increased interest in Hong Kong to the growing prominence of China in the world economy. “There have been a number of significant non-Chinese companies listing in Hong Kong, including Prada, Samsonite, Glencore and Rusal,” he said. The article noted that a bright spot for U.S. firms in Australia is the increase in the number of Rule 144A and other private offerings by Australian financial institutions and corporations. “The simple reason is that the Australian retail funding and wholesale capital markets are not sufficiently deep enough to satisfy the funding requirements of the major financial institutions,” Mr. Jones told ALB. “The U.S. remains an indispensible piece of their funding strategy.”