Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. lowered its stake in Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) by 1.7% during the 1st quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 29,849 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 527 shares during the period. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc.’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $4,091,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.
Other institutional investors also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Wagner Wealth Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth approximately $112,000. SeaCrest Wealth Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth approximately $125,000. Captrust Financial Advisors purchased a new stake in shares of Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth approximately $129,000. Signaturefd LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Ecolab in the 1st quarter worth approximately $131,000. Finally, Aevitas Wealth Management Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth approximately $133,000. Institutional investors own 76.21% of the company’s stock.
Several research firms recently weighed in on ECL. Nomura upped their price target on Ecolab from $125.00 to $136.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, April 19th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. downgraded Ecolab from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 2nd. ValuEngine upgraded Ecolab from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 17th. Credit Suisse Group set a $137.00 price target on Ecolab and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, April 27th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research downgraded Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, April 30th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and eleven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Ecolab has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $144.22.
Ecolab opened at $145.63 on Thursday, MarketBeat reports. The company has a market capitalization of $42.70 billion, a P/E ratio of 31.05, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.19 and a beta of 0.99. Ecolab has a 12-month low of $125.74 and a 12-month high of $150.46. The company has a current ratio of 1.15, a quick ratio of 0.77 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.83.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, May 1st. The basic materials company reported $0.91 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.89 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $3.47 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.38 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 19.01% and a net margin of 10.62%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 9.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.80 EPS. analysts forecast that Ecolab will post 5.4 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 16th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, June 19th will be issued a dividend of $0.41 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, June 18th. This represents a $1.64 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.13%. Ecolab’s payout ratio is 34.97%.
In other news, EVP Roberto Inchaustegui sold 4,800 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, March 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $136.04, for a total transaction of $652,992.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 27,402 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,727,768.08. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, major shareholder William H. Gates III purchased 491,499 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 16th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $136.83 per share, for a total transaction of $67,251,808.17. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have bought a total of 1,848,529 shares of company stock worth $248,579,565 over the last three months. Insiders own 1.50% of the company’s stock.
Ecolab Company Profile
Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene, and energy technologies and services for customers worldwide. The company operates through Global Industrial, Global Institutional, and Global Energy segments. The Global Industrial segment provides water treatment and process applications, and cleaning and sanitizing solutions primarily to large industrial customers within the manufacturing, food and beverage processing, chemical, mining and primary metals, power generation, pulp and paper, and commercial laundry industries.
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