Essex Financial Services Inc. continued to hold its stake in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) during the second quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The firm owned 5,859 shares of the company’s stock at the end of the second quarter. Essex Financial Services Inc.’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $695,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Several other large investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Compass Capital Management Inc. raised its stake in Ecolab by 2.3% in the second quarter. Compass Capital Management Inc. now owns 175,873 shares of the company’s stock worth $20,859,000 after buying an additional 3,991 shares during the last quarter. Intermede Investment Partners Ltd raised its stake in Ecolab by 2.1% in the second quarter. Intermede Investment Partners Ltd now owns 159,707 shares of the company’s stock worth $18,941,000 after buying an additional 3,235 shares during the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 1.5% in the first quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 1,174,164 shares of the company’s stock worth $130,953,000 after buying an additional 17,795 shares in the last quarter. Trillium Asset Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 3.6% in the second quarter. Trillium Asset Management LLC now owns 89,621 shares of the company’s stock worth $10,629,000 after buying an additional 3,136 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Comgest Global Investors S.A.S. raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 22.0% in the second quarter. Comgest Global Investors S.A.S. now owns 118,000 shares of the company’s stock worth $13,995,000 after buying an additional 21,300 shares in the last quarter. 74.79% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) traded down 0.36% during midday trading on Monday, hitting $116.34. 656,393 shares of the stock traded hands. The company’s 50-day moving average is $119.85 and its 200-day moving average is $118.64. Ecolab Inc. has a one year low of $98.62 and a one year high of $124.60. The company has a market cap of $33.92 billion, a PE ratio of 36.48 and a beta of 0.87.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, August 2nd. The company reported $1.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of $1.08. Ecolab had a net margin of 7.20% and a return on equity of 19.24%. The company earned $3.32 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.33 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.08 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 2.1% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts expect that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.44 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 17th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, September 20th will be given a $0.35 dividend. This represents a $1.40 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.20%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, September 16th. Ecolab’s payout ratio is currently 43.89%.
A number of equities research analysts recently issued reports on the stock. Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. upped their price objective on shares of Ecolab from $120.00 to $129.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 3rd. Barclays PLC upped their price objective on shares of Ecolab from $120.00 to $135.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 3rd. Canaccord Genuity upped their price objective on shares of Ecolab from $126.00 to $135.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 3rd. Credit Suisse Group AG reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $120.00 price objective on shares of Ecolab in a report on Wednesday, August 3rd. Finally, Citigroup Inc. raised shares of Ecolab from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their price objective for the company from $127.00 to $141.00 in a report on Wednesday, August 3rd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $127.68.
In other news, EVP Christophe Beck sold 5,789 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, September 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $122.70, for a total value of $710,310.30. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 32,475 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,984,682.50. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Chairman Douglas M. Baker, Jr. sold 25,800 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, August 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $122.41, for a total transaction of $3,158,178.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 456,349 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $55,861,681.09. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.50% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
Ecolab Company Profile
Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene and energy technologies and services. The Company’s segments include Global Industrial, Global Institutional, Global Energy, Other and Corporate. The Global Industrial segment consists of the Water, Food and Beverage, Paper and Textile Care operating units. The Global Institutional segment consists of the Institutional, Specialty and Healthcare operating units.
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