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JOHN DEERE CAPITAL $400 MILLION SHELF DEBT RATED 'A/A-' BY FITCH -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --

 JOHN DEERE CAPITAL $400 MILLION SHELF DEBT RATED 'A/A-' BY FITCH
 -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --
 NEW YORK, March 20 /PRNewswire/ -- John Deere Capital Corp.'s $400 million shelf registration is rated 'A' for senior debt and 'A-' for subordinated debt by Fitch. The company benefits from good business position and financial attributes as well as its ownership by 'A' rated Deere & Co. Deere Capital can now issue up to $500 million in debt securities and warrants under this and other shelf registrations.
 Though 75 percent of its receivables are Deere-related, Deere Capital has been expanding into new finance businesses to increase earnings and diversify. This expansion has been measured and strategically sound, and the long-term goal is to remain 50 percent grounded in Deere-related businesses. However, the new business has had a higher risk profile, and asset quality and earnings comparisons have suffered slightly as a result.
 Profitability remains consistently strong, although it was somewhat adversely affected in 1991 by higher provisions for non-Deere credit business. Agricultural credit, the foundation of Deere Capital's business, has low loss characteristics, so related provisioning requirements have been moderate. Also, low overhead ratios reflect an efficient distribution system through the Deere and non-Deere dealers that originate the receivables.
 Leverage ratios have trended up and will continue to as the company grows. Still, the 5.25 times debt/equity ratio at fiscal year-end (Oct. 31) was conservative, and targets are appropriate. The ratio of short-term debt to total debt is somewhat high at 67 percent, but backup facilities are adequate, the assets are liquid, and no funding disruptions are anticipated.
 -0- 3/20/92
 /CONTACT: Valerie Gerard of Fitch, 212-908-0577/
 (DE) CO: John Deere Capital Corp. ST: Illinois IN: FIN SU: RTG


CK -- NY032 -- 0070 03/20/92 11:50 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 20, 1992
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