First National Trust Co decreased its stake in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 13.7% during the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 3,127 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 496 shares during the quarter. First National Trust Co’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $490,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
A number of other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in ECL. Millennium Management LLC raised its position in Ecolab by 379.9% in the first quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 96,492 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $13,226,000 after purchasing an additional 76,387 shares during the period. Principal Financial Group Inc. raised its position in Ecolab by 3.5% in the first quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 1,368,074 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $187,522,000 after purchasing an additional 45,993 shares during the period. Gulf International Bank UK Ltd raised its position in Ecolab by 6.1% in the second quarter. Gulf International Bank UK Ltd now owns 84,848 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $11,906,000 after purchasing an additional 4,900 shares during the period. DnB Asset Management AS raised its position in Ecolab by 7.7% in the second quarter. DnB Asset Management AS now owns 37,558 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $5,271,000 after purchasing an additional 2,700 shares during the period. Finally, IFM Investors Pty Ltd raised its position in Ecolab by 44.3% in the second quarter. IFM Investors Pty Ltd now owns 11,685 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,640,000 after purchasing an additional 3,586 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 76.15% of the company’s stock.
ECL stock opened at $154.59 on Friday. The company has a current ratio of 1.34, a quick ratio of 0.84 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.79. The firm has a market capitalization of $44.25 billion, a P/E ratio of 30.03, a PEG ratio of 2.26 and a beta of 0.86. Ecolab Inc. has a 12-month low of $125.74 and a 12-month high of $159.92.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 30th. The basic materials company reported $1.53 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.53. The firm had revenue of $3.75 billion for 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 company’s quarterly revenue was up 5.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $1.37 EPS. On average, research analysts expect that Ecolab Inc. will post 5.27 EPS for the current year.
ECL has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Ecolab from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 24th. Canaccord Genuity set a $160.00 target price on Ecolab and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 24th. Boenning Scattergood restated a “buy” rating on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Tuesday, July 31st. Nomura restated a “hold” rating and issued a $146.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Wednesday, August 1st. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. upgraded Ecolab from an “underweight” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 1st. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $152.38.
In related news, Director Arthur J. Higgins sold 8,700 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $149.76, for a total value of $1,302,912.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 21,363 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,199,322.88. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, EVP Michael A. Hickey sold 32,468 shares of the business’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 a total of 104,285 shares of company stock worth $15,825,260 in the last quarter. Company insiders own 1.50% of the company’s stock.
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: Institutional Investors
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