Diversified Trust Co Reduces Stake in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL)

Diversified Trust Co decreased its stake in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECLGet Rating) by 16.4% during the second quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The firm owned 2,475 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 487 shares during the period. Diversified Trust Co’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $381,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. US Asset Management LLC purchased a new stake in Ecolab during the 1st quarter worth about $25,000. Citizens National Bank Trust Department purchased a new stake in Ecolab during the 4th quarter worth about $35,000. Intelligent Financial Strategies purchased a new stake in Ecolab during the 4th quarter worth about $35,000. Quent Capital LLC purchased a new stake in Ecolab during the 4th quarter worth about $44,000. Finally, O Dell Group LLC raised its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 62.1% in the 1st quarter. O Dell Group LLC now owns 188 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $33,000 after acquiring an additional 72 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 87.71% of the company’s stock.

Ecolab Price Performance

ECL opened at $149.47 on Friday. The stock’s 50 day simple moving average is $165.09 and its 200 day simple moving average is $165.62. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.15, a current ratio of 1.29 and a quick ratio of 0.84. Ecolab Inc. has a 1 year low of $143.82 and a 1 year high of $238.93. The firm has a market cap of $42.60 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 38.92, a PEG ratio of 2.59 and a beta of 1.01.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECLGet Rating) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The basic materials company reported $1.10 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.08 by $0.02. Ecolab had a return on equity of 18.56% and a net margin of 8.17%. The business had revenue of $3.58 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.48 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.22 EPS. Ecolab’s revenue for the quarter was up 13.2% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, analysts predict that Ecolab Inc. will post 4.78 earnings per share for the current year.

Ecolab Dividend Announcement

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 17th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, September 20th will be given a $0.51 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, September 19th. This represents a $2.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.36%. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is currently 53.13%.

Insider Transactions at Ecolab

In other news, EVP Angela M. Busch sold 2,300 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $170.66, for a total value of $392,518.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 16,716 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,852,752.56. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. In other news, major shareholder William H. Gates III purchased 149,190 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 11th. The shares were bought at an average cost of $171.47 per share, for a total transaction of $25,581,609.30. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 30,834,744 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,287,233,553.68. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, EVP Angela M. Busch sold 2,300 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $170.66, for a total value of $392,518.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 16,716 shares in the company, valued at $2,852,752.56. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have acquired 274,284 shares of company stock worth $47,244,385. 1.04% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

Several analysts have weighed in on ECL shares. Credit Suisse Group raised Ecolab from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and raised their price target for the company from $180.00 to $195.00 in a report on Friday, June 3rd. Bank of America cut Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and lowered their price target for the company from $193.00 to $183.00 in a report on Wednesday, July 13th. Royal Bank of Canada lowered their price target on Ecolab from $225.00 to $190.00 in a report on Thursday, July 14th. BMO Capital Markets started coverage on Ecolab in a report on Friday, June 3rd. They issued a “hold” rating and a $191.00 price target on the stock. Finally, Argus lowered their price target on Ecolab from $230.00 to $200.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, May 31st. Nine investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the stock presently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average price target of $193.78.

Ecolab Profile

(Get Rating)

Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene, and infection prevention solutions and services in the United States and internationally. The company operates through Global Industrial, Global Institutional & Specialty, and Global Healthcare & Life Sciences segments. The Global Industrial segment offers water treatment and process applications, and cleaning and sanitizing solutions to manufacturing, food and beverage processing, transportation, chemical, metals and mining, power generation, pulp and paper, commercial laundry, petroleum, refining, and petrochemical industries.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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