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BARNETT 'BBB+' SENIOR DEBENTURES AFFIRMED, REMOVED FROM FITCHALERT -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --

 NEW YORK, Dec. 24 /PRNewswire/ -- Barnett Banks, Inc.'s (NYSE: BBI) 7.75 percent sinking fund debentures due 1997 are affirmed at 'BBB+' and removed from FitchAlert, where they were placed on May 18 following the announcement of Barnett's proposed acquisition of First Florida Banks, Inc. Also affirmed are the 'BBB' ratings on Barnett's 8.5 percent subordinated capital notes due 1999 and floating rate subordinated capital notes due 1996, as well as the respective 'BBB' and 'BBB-' ratings on the company's subordinated debt and preferred stock shelf registrations. In all, roughly $700 million in outstanding debt is affected. The credit trend is stable.
 Following consummation of the merger earlier this month, Barnett's leading market share of deposits in Florida was further strengthened. On a pro-forma combined basis at mid-year 1992, Barnett's 28.2 percent share of commercial bank core deposits compared to First Union Corp.'s 21.6 percent. The earnings improvements exhibited by Barnett and First Florida during 1992 are expected to continue at the combined entity, as the in-market nature of the merger will allow for significant cost savings.
 Although reduction of nonperforming assets has been somewhat slow due to the sluggishness of Florida's real estate markets, Barnett's reserve, on a combined basis at Sept. 30, covered 98 percent of problem loans, including 90-day delinquencies. This should adequately insulate the company's equity base against further deterioration in the loan portfolio. However, given the company's large portfolio of foreclosed properties, earnings in 1992's fourth quarter and the first half of 1993 are expected to continue to be adversely impacted by charges for asset revaluations.
 -0- 12/24/92
 /CONTACT: Christopher M. Siedman, 212-908-0524 or, Nancy E. Stroker, CFA, 212-908-0533, both of Fitch/
 (BBI)


CO: Barnett Banks, Inc. ST: Florida IN: FIN SU: RTG

LR -- NY011 -- 9843 12/24/92 12:19 EST
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Date:Dec 24, 1992
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