Estimates have been surging for
) after the company delivered strong fourth quarter results on
It is a Zacks #2 Rank (Buy) stock.
Based on current consensus estimates, analysts project 12% EPS
growth this year and 11% growth next year. This is in-line with
management's target EPS growth rate between 10-13% over the next
On top of this, the company pays a dividend that yields a solid
Equifax is one of the three major consumer credit reporting
agencies in the United States. It was founded in 1899 and is
headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. It has a market cap of $5
Fourth Quarter Results
Equifax reported better than expected results for the fourth
quarter on February 8. Earnings per share came in at 68 cents,
beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny. It was a 10%
increase over the same quarter in 2010.
Revenue rose 10% to $509.7 million, ahead of the Zacks Consensus
Estimate of $502.0 million. This was driven in large part by a 13%
increase in Total U.S. Consumer Information Solutions.
Meanwhile, the operating margin expanded from 22.8% of revenue to
24.7% in the quarter.
Following strong Q4 results, analysts raised their estimates
significantly higher for both 2012 and 2013, sending the stock to a
Zacks #2 Rank (Buy).
The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2012 is now $2.82, representing
12% growth over 2011 EPS. The 2013 consensus estimate is currently
$3.13, corresponding with 11% growth.
This is in-line with the company's 3-year target of 10-13% EPS
growth on revenue growth of 7-10% with steady margin expansion and
Equifax also offers a dividend that yields a solid 1.5%.
After holding its quarterly dividend steady at 4 cents per share
for several years, Equifax boosted it to 16 cents in late 2010.
Although shares are up 7% since the company reported its fourth
quarter results, the valuation picture still looks reasonable.
Shares trade at 14.9x 12-month forward earnings, in-line with its
And its price to book ratio of 3.0 is well below its 10-year median
The Bottom Line
With strong EPS growth forecasts, rising estimates, a solid
dividend and reasonable valuation, Equifax offers attractive total
Todd Bunton is the Growth & Income Stock Strategist for
and Co-Editor of the
Reitmeister Value Investor
EQUIFAX INC (
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