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EQUIFAX REVAMPS FINANCIAL POLICIES, ANNOUNCES STOCK REPURCHASE PLAN, PERIODIC DIVIDEND INCREASES

    ATLANTA, Nov. 16 ~PRNewswire~ -- Equifax Inc. (NYSE: EFX) today announced that its board of directors approved broad changes in its financial policies and at the same time authorized a self-tender offer to repurchase up to 10.5 million shares of its common stock.
    The new policies, which are a part of a comprehensive financial strategy designed to enhance long-term shareholder value, will effect permanent changes in the way the company will finance its future growth and distribute excess cash to its shareholders.
    Under the terms of the dutch auction tender offer that commences today, the company has offered to repurchase up to 10.5 million shares at a price of not less than $17.00 nor in excess of $19.25 per share. Equifax management and directors will not participate in the tender offer.
    Stockholders who wish to participate must decide how many shares they will tender and the price within the stated range at which they will offer their shares for repurchase.  The offer, proration period and withdrawal rights will expire at 5 p.m. eastern standard time on Dec. 15, unless the offer is extended by the company.
    After the expiration of the tender period, Equifax will set the final share price for the tendered shares.  The final price will be the lowest price within the stated range that will permit Equifax to purchase the 10.5 million shares.  All shares properly tendered at or below the final purchase price will be purchased at the final purchase price, subject to the conditions of the offer, including the proration terms.
    The dealer managers for the offer are Lehman Brothers and The Robinson-Humphrey Company, Inc.  The information agent is Corporate Investor Communications, Inc.  Copies of the Offer to Purchase, dated Nov. 16, 1992, are being sent to all Equifax shareholders.  Additional copies may be obtained from the information agent by calling 800-242-4410.
    The company plans to finance the cost of the tender offer by drawing down its commercial bank revolving credit facility but plans to subsequently replace these funds with intermediate- or long-term debt. Equifax Chairman and CEO C.B. Rogers Jr. said:  "This will enable Equifax to quickly establish and maintain a more balanced capital structure that makes greater use of long-term debt without imposing excessive risk on either the company's shareholders or creditors.  We believe that the substitution of lower cost debt for equity in our permanent capital structure will reduce our cost of capital to the benefit our shareholders."
    In addition to the new capital structure policy, the Equifax board of directors also adopted new policies pertaining to the distribution to the shareholders of excess cash balances not required for value- enhancing investments, including acquisitions.  Describing these policies, Rogers said: "The board approved a dividend policy that contemplates periodic increases in the cash dividend payout at a rate lower than the growth rate of earnings per share.  The dividend payout ratio therefore may be expected to decline, but cash dividends per share will continue to rise."  He also stated that in the future, the board may consider cash distributions to the shareholders in addition to the regular dividend, perhaps in the form of open market share repurchases. "While this policy has yet to receive formal board approval, such action is in line with our goal to maximize long-term shareholder value," Rogers said.
    Equifax Senior Vice President and CFO Derek V. Smith summarized the goals of the financial strategy and policies by saying that they "will provide Equifax with sufficient funds to replace existing assets and undertake investments in new growth opportunities while maintaining a prudent balance between debt and equity in our capital structure.  They also will preserve the financial flexibility that is necessary to accommodate unexpected future cash needs."  Rogers added, "Our financial policies commit Equifax to a course of action that is consistent with both our long-term business plan and the best interests of our shareholders."
    Equifax Inc. is the leading provider of information for consumer financial transactions.  Established in 1899 in Atlanta, Equifax today employs 12,000 people throughout North America and the United Kingdom. The company provides information services and systems that help its customers grant credit, insure lives and property, select new employees, authorize checks at the point of sale, process credit card transactions, market products, control health care costs, and complete other transactions that benefit the economy, businesses and consumers. Revenues for the year ended Dec. 31, 1991, were more than $1 billion.
    -0-             11~16~92
    CONTACT:  Richard F. Wacht, vice president investor relations of Equifax, 404-885-8304
    (EFX) CO:  EQUIFAX INC. IN:  FIN ST:  GA


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Date:Nov 16, 1992
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