Equifax’s stock drops as outlook is cut

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Equifax Inc. shares fell in the extended session Wednesday after the credit-score agency cut its outlook for the year, blaming a weak mortgage market that is expected to continue in the current quarter.

Equifax
EFX,
-3.15%
shares dropped as much as 8%, adding to a 3.2% loss from Wednesday to close the regular session at $175.16.

Chief Executive Mark Begor said in a statement that the company was reducing its full-year earnings-per-share estimate by 31 cents to $6.67, and its revenue forecast by $44 million to $5.26 billion, “to reflect the impact of weaker than expected U.S. mortgage market and foreign exchange, partially offset by acquisition of Boa Vista Serviços.”

Analysts surveyed by FactSet had forecast earnings of $6.90 a share on revenue of $5.3 billion.

In August, Equifax closed the acquisition of Boa Vista Serviços, the second-largest credit bureau in Brazil, in a deal with an enterprise value of $640 million.

“We expect the weaker U.S. mortgage market at current high interest rates to continue in the fourth quarter, and we now expect full year Equifax mortgage credit inquiries to decline about 34%, which is down over 3 percentage points from our prior framework,” Begor said.

The company reported third-quarter net income of $162.2 million, or 39 cents a share, compared with $165.7 million, also 39 cents a share, in the year-ago period.

Adjusting for stock-based compensation and other items, Equifax reported adjusted earnings of $1.76 a share, up from $1.73 a share in the year-ago quarter.

Revenue rose to $1.32 billion from $1.24 billion from a year ago.

Meanwhile, analysts surveyed by FactSet had forecast earnings of $1.78 a share on revenue of $1.33 billion.

Equifax shares finished Wednesday down 9.9% for the year to date, while the S&P 500
SPX
is up 12.4% over the same period.

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