New York – Venture capital investment slowed in the fourth quarter, with U.S. companies raising $7.4 billion, down $1 billion from the previous quarter, according to new figures released by Dow Jones VentureSource.

The decline, which mirrors a fourth-quarter drop in exit activity, is noteworthy since the final quarter of the year is traditionally one of the most active for financings and exits.

“The fourth quarter may have seen a temporary slowdown as venture capitalists reset their expectations for the exit market and entrepreneurs adjusted their companies’ valuations to suit the current climate,” said Jessica Canning, global research director for Dow Jones VentureSource.

For the full year, investors sank $32.6 billion into 3,209 venture deals, a 10 percent increase in capital raised and 6 percent increase in deals from 2010.

This article was also published in New England Tech Wire.

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