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Equifax Soars on First-Quarter Earnings Beat, Revenue Guidance Boost

Equifax reports its fifth straight quarter of double-digit revenue growth.
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Equifax  (EFX) - Get Equifax Inc. Report was jumping Thursday after the credit-reporting company beat Wall Street's first-quarter earnings expectations, reported record revenue, and raised its 2021 revenue guidance.

Shares of the Atlanta company were surging nearly 15% to $221.19 on Thursday.

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Equifax reported net income of $201.6 million, or $1.64 a share, up from $116.9 million, or 95 cents a share, a year ago. Adjusted income attributable to Equifax was $1.97 a share, beating the FactSet consensus of $1.52.

Sales totaled $1.2 billion, up 27% from a year ago, and marked a fifth straight quarter of double-digit revenue growth, as well as a record for the company. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had called for sales of $1.12 billion.

"Our strong outperformance, balance sheet and cash generation allowed us to reinvest in future growth by completing five bolt-on acquisitions during the quarter that enhanced our unique data assets and capabilities," CEO Mark Bego said in a statement. 

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Revenue growth was driven by by "our combined US B2B Business - Workforce Solutions and USIS - which delivered a combined 38% revenue growth as we continued to significantly outpace the strong US mortgage market and deliver strong growth in our non-mortgage businesses," Bego said.

Bego said the company was confident in its outlook for 2021 and raised the full-year revenue guidance to a range of $4.58 billion to $4.68 billion, and adjusted earnings guidance to between $6.75 and $7.05 a share.

FactSet forecasts full-year earnings of $6.46 a share and revenue of $4.44 billion.

"Importantly, EFX raised its 2021 outlook while forecasting a weaker Mortgage market," said Cowen analyst George Mihalos. "By our estimate the revenue guidance range was raised over and above the 1Q beat and the additional inorganic contribution."

Truist analyst Andrew Jeffrey said he believed  "improving macro is driving credit demand, and the question for us is how much share Equifax may be gaining, particularly in EWS (Equifax Workforce Solutions."

In January, Equifax said it was purchasing artificial intelligence data fraud prevention firm Kount for $640 million.