First Midwest Bank Trust Division reduced its stake in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 56.4% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund owned 5,708 shares of the company’s stock after selling 7,395 shares during the period. First Midwest Bank Trust Division’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $677,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Glenmede Trust Co. NA raised its position in Ecolab by 6.7% in the first quarter. Glenmede Trust Co. NA now owns 19,611 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,186,000 after buying an additional 1,231 shares during the last quarter. Virginia Retirement System bought a new position in Ecolab during the first quarter valued at approximately $481,000. Ngam Advisors L.P. raised its position in Ecolab by 6.3% in the first quarter. Ngam Advisors L.P. now owns 63,114 shares of the company’s stock valued at $7,038,000 after buying an additional 3,716 shares during the last quarter. Teachers Advisors Inc. raised its position in Ecolab by 1.6% in the first quarter. Teachers Advisors Inc. now owns 392,416 shares of the company’s stock valued at $43,762,000 after buying an additional 6,150 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Stratos Wealth Partners LTD. raised its position in Ecolab by 16.9% in the first quarter. Stratos Wealth Partners LTD. now owns 2,153 shares of the company’s stock valued at $240,000 after buying an additional 311 shares during the last quarter. 74.80% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) traded down 0.78% during trading on Tuesday, reaching $120.16. The company had a trading volume of 932,843 shares. The stock has a market capitalization of $35.04 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 37.68 and a beta of 0.87. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $120.96 and a 200-day moving average of $118.22. Ecolab Inc. has a 1-year low of $98.62 and a 1-year high of $124.60.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 2nd. The company reported $1.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.08. Ecolab had a return on equity of 19.24% and a net margin of 7.20%. The firm had revenue of $3.32 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.33 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.08 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was down 2.1% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts anticipate that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.44 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 17th. Investors of record on Tuesday, September 20th will be issued a dividend of $0.35 per share. This represents a $1.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.17%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, September 16th. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is currently 43.89%.
Several research analysts recently weighed in on ECL shares. Canaccord Genuity restated a “buy” rating on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Wednesday, June 22nd. Nomura dropped their target price on Ecolab from $96.00 to $94.00 and set a “reduce” rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, June 29th. Barclays PLC restated an “overweight” rating and set a $120.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Friday, July 1st. Jefferies Group restated a “hold” rating on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Wednesday, July 6th. Finally, Citigroup Inc. boosted their target price on Ecolab from $117.00 to $127.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Friday, July 15th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $127.25.
In related news, EVP Christophe Beck sold 5,789 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, September 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $122.70, for a total transaction of $710,310.30. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 32,475 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,984,682.50. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, EVP Michael A. Hickey sold 17,761 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $123.90, for a total value of $2,200,587.90. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 61,342 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,600,273.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 1.50% of the company’s stock.
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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