Atlantic Trust Group LLC increased its holdings in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 475.4% during the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 548,104 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after buying an additional 452,846 shares during the quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC owned 0.19% of Ecolab worth $70,492,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Other hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in the company. TCI Wealth Advisors Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 4.8% in the 2nd quarter. TCI Wealth Advisors Inc. now owns 763 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $101,000 after buying an additional 35 shares during the period. Atlantic Trust LLC acquired a new position in Ecolab in the 2nd quarter worth about $106,000. IHT Wealth Management LLC raised its holdings in Ecolab by 4.9% in the 2nd quarter. IHT Wealth Management LLC now owns 811 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $116,000 after purchasing an additional 38 shares during the period. Atwood & Palmer Inc. raised its holdings in Ecolab by 2.9% in the 2nd quarter. Atwood & Palmer Inc. now owns 892 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $118,000 after purchasing an additional 25 shares during the period. Finally, Sphera Funds Management LTD. acquired a new position in Ecolab in the 2nd quarter worth about $133,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 76.55% of the company’s stock.
In related news, SVP Bruno Lavandier sold 347 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $134.77, for a total transaction of $46,765.19. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 7,615 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,026,273.55. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, CEO Douglas M. Baker, Jr. sold 18,000 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $137.09, for a total value of $2,467,620.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 427,548 shares in the company, valued at approximately $58,612,555.32. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 57,446 shares of company stock worth $7,886,307. Corporate insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.
A number of equities analysts have commented on ECL shares. Barclays reissued a “buy” rating and set a $150.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a report on Wednesday, December 27th. Royal Bank of Canada upped their price target on Ecolab from $137.00 to $143.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Tuesday, November 7th. Citigroup lowered Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, January 5th. Robert W. Baird restated a “hold” rating and issued a $140.00 price target on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Thursday, October 12th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Ecolab from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, November 2nd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $137.21.
Ecolab Inc. (NYSE ECL) traded up $0.65 during trading on Friday, reaching $137.68. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,270,000 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,030,000. Ecolab Inc. has a one year low of $117.53 and a one year high of $138.12. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89, a quick ratio of 0.83 and a current ratio of 1.23. The firm has a market capitalization of $39,780.00, a PE ratio of 31.01, a PEG ratio of 2.03 and a beta of 1.05.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 31st. The basic materials company reported $1.37 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.36 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $3.56 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.55 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 19.05% and a net margin of 9.67%. Ecolab’s quarterly revenue was up 5.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the firm earned $1.28 earnings per share. analysts anticipate that Ecolab Inc. will post 4.7 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, December 19th will be issued a dividend of $0.41 per share. This is a positive change from Ecolab’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.37. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, December 18th. This represents a $1.64 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.19%. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 33.33%.
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Ecolab Company Profile
Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene and energy technologies and services. The Company’s cleaning and sanitizing programs and products, pest elimination services and equipment maintenance and repair services support customers in the foodservice, food and beverage processing, hospitality, healthcare, government and education, retail, textile care and commercial facilities management sectors in over 170 countries.
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