Ashburton Jersey Ltd decreased its stake in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 24.4% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 27,401 shares of the company’s stock after selling 8,858 shares during the period. Ecolab accounts for 1.4% of Ashburton Jersey Ltd’s holdings, making the stock its 19th largest position. Ashburton Jersey Ltd’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $3,250,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Bartlett & Co. LLC boosted its position in Ecolab by 2.0% in the second quarter. Bartlett & Co. LLC now owns 1,568 shares of the company’s stock valued at $186,000 after buying an additional 30 shares in the last quarter. Washington Trust Bank boosted its position in Ecolab by 29.2% in the second quarter. Washington Trust Bank now owns 1,592 shares of the company’s stock valued at $189,000 after buying an additional 360 shares in the last quarter. Agran Libbie purchased a new position in Ecolab during the second quarter valued at $214,000. Savant Capital LLC purchased a new position in Ecolab during the second quarter valued at $215,000. Finally, Concert Wealth Management Inc. purchased a new position in Ecolab during the second quarter valued at $220,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 74.79% of the company’s stock.
Shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) traded up 0.22% on Tuesday, reaching $116.60. The company had a trading volume of 634,136 shares. The firm has a market capitalization of $34.00 billion, a PE ratio of 36.56 and a beta of 0.87. Ecolab Inc. has a 12 month low of $98.62 and a 12 month high of $124.60. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $119.85 and its 200 day moving average is $118.64.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 2nd. The company reported $1.08 EPS for the quarter, hitting analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.08. Ecolab had a return on equity of 19.24% and a net margin of 7.20%. The company had revenue of $3.32 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.33 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.08 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 2.1% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts expect that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.44 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 17th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, September 20th were paid 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 was Friday, September 16th. Ecolab’s payout ratio is currently 43.89%.
Several equities research analysts have recently issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research raised Ecolab from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $136.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, October 4th. Macquarie assumed coverage on Ecolab in a research note on Thursday, August 25th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $143.00 price objective for the company. Nomura raised their price objective on Ecolab from $94.00 to $98.00 and gave the company a “reduce” rating in a research note on Monday, August 22nd. Credit Suisse Group AG reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $120.00 price objective on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Wednesday, August 3rd. Finally, Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. raised their price objective on Ecolab from $120.00 to $129.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 3rd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $127.68.
In other news, 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 value of $3,158,178.00. Following the sale, the chairman now directly owns 456,349 shares in the company, valued at $55,861,681.09. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, 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 in the company, valued at $3,984,682.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.50% of the stock is 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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