Banker Loyalty in Mergers and Acquisitions
When investment banks advise on merger and acquisition (M&A) transactions, are they fiduciaries of their clients, gatekeepers for investors, or simply arm’s-length counterparties with no other-regarding duties? Scholars have generally treated M&A advisors as arm’s-length counterparties, putting faith in the power of contract law and market constraints to discipline errant bank behavior. In this Article, Professor Andrew Tuch counters that view, arguing that investment banks are rightly characterized as fiduciaries of their M&A clients and thus required to loyally serve client interests. He also develops an analytical framework for assessing the liability rules that will most effectively deter disloyalty on the part of investment banks toward their M&A clients.