Herbert Smith scoops Slaughters

Slaughter and May, the traditional leader on major stock exchange flotations, has acted on none so far this year, while Herbert Smith has scooped a higher number and total value than any other firm.

KPMG figures showing the total number of flotations in the past four years still put Slaughters at number two by deal number, alongside Clifford Chance and behind table-topper Ashurst Morris Crisp.

But in an apparent reflection of Slaughters' loss of capital markets work, even in the UK, Corporate Money's latest table shows the firm advised on no major float this year, while Herbert Smith managed four deals worth £8.8bn and Slaughters' main rivals, Linklaters, Freshfields and Allen & Overy, all advised on three flotations.

In Europe, Slaughters managed only four equity issues and failed to make the 1997/98 International Financial Law Review table.

KPMG's figures show there were fewer flotations (42) in the first half of this year compared with the first half of last year, when 54 companies floated.

With the world's stock markets in turmoil, there are likely to be far fewer deals available in the last quarter of this year.