Harfst & Associates Inc. Lowers Stock Holdings in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL)

Harfst & Associates Inc. lessened its position in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 9.4% during the 2nd quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The firm owned 3,562 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 371 shares during the quarter. Harfst & Associates Inc.’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $733,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Impax Asset Management Group plc lifted its stake in Ecolab by 23.9% in the second quarter. Impax Asset Management Group plc now owns 3,196,298 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $658,341,000 after acquiring an additional 617,083 shares during the last quarter. Royal Bank of Canada lifted its holdings in Ecolab by 13.7% in the 1st quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 4,583,680 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $981,228,000 after purchasing an additional 552,683 shares in the last quarter. Ontario Teachers Pension Plan Board purchased a new position in shares of Ecolab during the 1st quarter worth about $93,240,000. Morgan Stanley increased its position in Ecolab by 6.6% during the 1st quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 5,053,202 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $1,081,738,000 after purchasing an additional 311,153 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Voloridge Investment Management LLC acquired a new stake in Ecolab in the first quarter valued at approximately $58,980,000. 72.29% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of ECL stock opened at $217.09 on Tuesday. The stock has a market capitalization of $62.11 billion, a P/E ratio of 59.64, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.54 and a beta of 1.00. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.00, a quick ratio of 1.41 and a current ratio of 1.91. Ecolab Inc. has a fifty-two week low of $181.25 and a fifty-two week high of $231.25. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $220.73 and a 200 day moving average price of $217.41.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 27th. The basic materials company reported $1.22 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.18 by $0.04. Ecolab had a net margin of 8.66% and a return on equity of 20.14%. The business had revenue of $3.16 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.11 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.65 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 17.8% on a year-over-year basis. On average, research analysts forecast that Ecolab Inc. will post 5.04 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 15th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, September 14th will be given a $0.48 dividend. This represents a $1.92 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.88%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, September 13th. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is currently 47.76%.

In other news, SVP Scott D. Kirkland sold 2,800 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $217.67, for a total value of $609,476.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 6,122 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,332,575.74. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, Chairman Douglas M. Baker, Jr. sold 173,036 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, September 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $223.54, for a total transaction of $38,680,467.44. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 796,963 shares in the company, valued at approximately $178,153,109.02. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 217,496 shares of company stock worth $48,541,441 over the last quarter. Company insiders own 1.05% of the company’s stock.

ECL has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. Boenning Scattergood reissued an “outperform” rating on shares of Ecolab in a report on Wednesday, September 15th. Royal Bank of Canada assumed coverage on Ecolab in a research note on Thursday, September 2nd. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $260.00 price target on the stock. Six investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Based on data from MarketBeat, the stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $232.60.

Ecolab Company Profile

Ecolab, Inc engages in the provision of products and services in the field of water, hygiene, and energy. It operates through the following segments: Global Industrial, Global Institutional & Specialty, Global Energy & Life Science, and Other. The Global Industrial segment consists of the water, food and beverage, paper, and downstream operating segments.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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