According to assurance, tax and advisory firm Grant Thornton, corporates in the country announced 458 deals in the January-November period amounting to $26.76 billion. This was a decline of 21 per cent over the year ago period in value terms.
"The deal activity currently remains moderate, which matches the overall economic sentiment," Grant Thornton India LLP Partner Transaction Advisory Services Raja Lahiri said.
While certain regulatory steps being taken by the government to attract more FDI in sectors such as retail, aviation, broadcasting and telecom are positive signals, the investors, however, are adopting a cautious approach, he said.
"As a result, deal-making is taking longer with more intensive due diligence and evaluation of regulatory risks," he said.
The month of November witnessed M&A and PE deal activity worth $2 billion, which is similar to the levels seen in September and October 2013.
Sector-wise, real estate attracted deals worth $513.23 million -- the largest percentage of the total deal tally in November (39 per cent), followed by IT & ITeS ($225.18 million, 17 per cent), pharma ($193.14 million, 15 per cent), banking and financial ($175.16 million, 13 per cent) and telecom ($80 million, 6 per cent).
The top five M&A deals accounted for 63 per cent of the total deal values.
Lodha Group's acquision of McDonald House for $503 million, was termed as the deal of the month.
IntercontinentalExchange Group Inc's 100 per cent stake acquisition in Singapore Mercantile Exchange for $150 million was the second largest deal, followed by Sanofi Aventis-Shantha Biotechnics deal ($122 million).
The other major transaction for the month of November include SQS Software Quality Systems AG's 100 per cent stake acquisition in Thinksoft Global Services for $24 billion.