M. Kraus & Co cut its position in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 1.1% during the first quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The fund owned 36,157 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 400 shares during the period. Ecolab makes up about 3.0% of M. Kraus & Co’s portfolio, making the stock its 19th largest position. M. Kraus & Co’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $4,532,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Several other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of the company. Gould Asset Management LLC CA boosted its stake in Ecolab by 0.3% in the fourth quarter. Gould Asset Management LLC CA now owns 3,810 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $447,000 after buying an additional 10 shares in the last quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS boosted its stake in Ecolab by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS now owns 15,042 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $1,763,000 after buying an additional 53 shares in the last quarter. M Holdings Securities Inc. boosted its stake in Ecolab by 1.0% in the fourth quarter. M Holdings Securities Inc. now owns 7,188 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $843,000 after buying an additional 72 shares in the last quarter. Pinnacle Financial Partners Inc. boosted its stake in Ecolab by 0.9% in the fourth quarter. Pinnacle Financial Partners Inc. now owns 10,661 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $1,250,000 after buying an additional 98 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Nippon Life Insurance Co. boosted its stake in Ecolab by 0.5% in the third quarter. Nippon Life Insurance Co. now owns 18,739 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $2,281,000 after buying an additional 99 shares in the last quarter. 75.09% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) traded up 0.28% on Friday, reaching $127.09. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 2,893,207 shares. The company has a market cap of $36.86 billion, a P/E ratio of 30.02 and a beta of 0.90. Ecolab Inc. has a 12 month low of $110.65 and a 12 month high of $129.85. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $126.33 and its 200 day moving average price is $121.57.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, May 2nd. The basic materials company reported $0.80 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.81 by $0.01. Ecolab had a net margin of 8.11% and a return on equity of 19.08%. The company had revenue of $3.17 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.16 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.77 EPS. Ecolab’s quarterly revenue was up 2.2% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts forecast that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.78 earnings per share for the current year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 17th. Investors of record on Tuesday, June 20th will be paid a dividend of $0.37 per share. This represents a $1.48 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.17%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, June 16th. Ecolab’s payout ratio is currently 41.11%.
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ECL has been the subject of several research reports. Canaccord Genuity reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $135.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Monday, May 1st. Nomura raised Ecolab from a “reduce” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their target price for the company from $99.00 to $118.00 in a research note on Monday, April 3rd. Instinet raised Ecolab from a “reduce” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their target price for the company from $99.00 to $118.00 in a research note on Monday, April 3rd. Zacks Investment Research raised Ecolab from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, February 24th. Finally, Edward Jones raised Ecolab from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 22nd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $127.86.
In other news, Director Jerry W. Levin sold 748 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, March 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $124.49, for a total value of $93,118.52. Following the transaction, the director now owns 32,521 shares in the company, valued at $4,048,539.29. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, EVP Christophe Beck sold 6,959 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $127.11, for a total transaction of $884,558.49. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 42,419 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,391,879.09. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.50% of the company’s stock.
Ecolab Company Profile
Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene and energy technologies and services. The Company’s cleaning and sanitizing programs and products, pest elimination services and equipment maintenance and repair services support customers in the foodservice, food and beverage processing, hospitality, healthcare, government and education, retail, textile care and commercial facilities management sectors in over 170 countries.
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