Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) – Investment analysts at Jefferies Financial Group lowered their FY2018 EPS estimates for Ecolab in a research note issued on Tuesday, October 30th. Jefferies Financial Group analyst L. Alexander now forecasts that the basic materials company will earn $5.25 per share for the year, down from their previous forecast of $5.40. Jefferies Financial Group also issued estimates for Ecolab’s FY2019 earnings at $6.00 EPS, FY2020 earnings at $7.05 EPS, FY2021 earnings at $7.70 EPS and FY2022 earnings at $8.55 EPS.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 30th. The basic materials company reported $1.53 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.53. The business had revenue of $3.75 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.74 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 19.13% and a net margin of 10.99%. The business’s revenue was up 5.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.37 earnings per share.
Other equities analysts also recently issued reports about the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Ecolab from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $176.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Wednesday, October 10th. UBS Group boosted their price objective on Ecolab from $165.00 to $180.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 2nd. ValuEngine upgraded Ecolab from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, September 7th. Boenning Scattergood reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Tuesday, July 31st. Finally, Canaccord Genuity set a $160.00 price objective on Ecolab and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 24th. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $152.38.
Shares of NYSE ECL opened at $152.73 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.79, a current ratio of 1.34 and a quick ratio of 0.84. The company has a market cap of $43.05 billion, a PE ratio of 32.57, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.20 and a beta of 0.96. Ecolab has a 12-month low of $125.74 and a 12-month high of $159.92.
Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of ECL. Braun Bostich & Associates Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 487.7% in the second quarter. Braun Bostich & Associates Inc. now owns 858 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $120,000 after buying an additional 712 shares in the last quarter. Squar Milner Financial Services LLC bought a new position in shares of Ecolab in the second quarter valued at $126,000. Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC bought a new position in shares of Ecolab in the second quarter valued at $139,000. LeJeune Puetz Investment Counsel LLC bought a new position in shares of Ecolab in the second quarter valued at $154,000. Finally, Harfst & Associates Inc. bought a new position in shares of Ecolab in the second quarter valued at $201,000. 76.15% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
In other Ecolab news, EVP Christophe Beck sold 25,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $147.83, for a total value of $3,769,665.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 27,649 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,087,351.67. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, EVP Michael A. Hickey sold 32,468 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $155.80, for a total value of $5,058,514.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 104,285 shares of company stock valued at $15,825,260 over the last 90 days. 1.50% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
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.
Further Reading: Cash Flow
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