Health and technology are providing heat in what would otherwise be a shallow year for merger and acquisition markets, according to Bank of America. The bank has reported 150 deals so far this year, which annually comes in about 9% lower than last year. That makes sense when a weaker market landscape typically provides lower market returns, said strategist Jill Carey Hall. But healthcare and technology have been on pace for decades making their best deals since 1997 and 2016, respectively. Markets in biotech are particularly buoyant due to cheaper valuations, vulnerable vendors and growing interest in big pharma. Technology, led by software, has also risen due to the abundance of money from strategic acquirers and the fragmentation of sub-sectors that are leaving small fish for those who are on the bait. Bank of America screened small-cap companies that may have merger or acquisition potential. Hall looked for Russell 2000 stocks that met the following criteria: Individual share class Have more than 90% of the share available for purchase Three years of positive operating cash flow The bank also looked for stocks with net debt Their median earnings before interest and tax was. below the industry group base and a 15% discount to the median industry group valuation for enterprise value, or total company value, compared to operating cash flow, free cash flow and earnings before interest and tax. Although Hall noted that there is no way to know whether a company will be part of a merger or acquisition until it happens, these stocks are among those slated for a deal. InterDigital , a company focused on immersive technology for wireless and video, signed a seven-year patent deal with Apple earlier this month worth more than $900 million. It also increased its revenue forecast for the third quarter to between $112 million and $115 million from between $96 million and $100 million. The stock is down 32.9% this year, performing slightly below the high-tech Nasdaq. Perdoceo Education , which uses technology to operate for-profit higher education institutions, also made the list. The company reported earlier this summer that revenue, operating income and student enrollments at two of its largest schools were down for the quarter and year compared to the same periods a year ago. It is trailing the Nasdaq but down 10.5% so far this year. Vanda Pharmaceuticals, known for its sleep and schizophrenia treatments, has announced a partnership with OilPass to research and develop a modified peptide nucleic acid. Vanda has lost 36.2% in the year to date. Meanwhile, Supernus announced last week that it would need to answer more questions from the Food and Drug Administration to get its drug infusion device to treat Parkinson’s disease “back on track toward potential US approval.” The pharmaceutical company’s shares have risen 13.6% this year. — CNBC’s Michael Bloom contributed to this report.