CIBC Private Wealth Group LLC trimmed its position in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL – Get Rating) by 4.6% in the 3rd quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 194,267 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 9,416 shares during the quarter. CIBC Private Wealth Group LLC’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $28,057,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Other hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in the company. Lumature Wealth Partners LLC raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 4.7% in the 3rd quarter. Lumature Wealth Partners LLC now owns 1,535 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $222,000 after acquiring an additional 69 shares in the last quarter. McKinley Carter Wealth Services Inc. raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 1.0% in the 3rd quarter. McKinley Carter Wealth Services Inc. now owns 7,221 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $1,043,000 after acquiring an additional 74 shares in the last quarter. Integrated Advisors Network LLC raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 2.6% in the 3rd quarter. Integrated Advisors Network LLC now owns 3,002 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $434,000 after acquiring an additional 75 shares in the last quarter. Zions Bancorporation N.A. raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 39.8% in the 3rd quarter. Zions Bancorporation N.A. now owns 267 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $39,000 after acquiring an additional 76 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Renaissance Investment Group LLC raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 1.4% in the 3rd quarter. Renaissance Investment Group LLC now owns 5,894 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $875,000 after acquiring an additional 79 shares in the last quarter. 86.76% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Analyst Ratings Changes
Several research firms have recently commented on ECL. Stifel Nicolaus boosted their price target on Ecolab from $140.00 to $164.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 15th. Wells Fargo & Company upped their target price on Ecolab from $168.00 to $175.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 15th. Royal Bank of Canada raised Ecolab from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and upped their target price for the company from $155.00 to $185.00 in a research report on Wednesday, February 15th. Barclays upped their target price on Ecolab from $160.00 to $165.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 15th. Finally, Citigroup increased their price objective on Ecolab from $164.00 to $166.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Thursday, February 16th. Eight investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to data from MarketBeat, the company has a consensus rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus price target of $173.13.
Ecolab Price Performance
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL – Get Rating) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, February 14th. The basic materials company reported $1.27 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.25 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $3.67 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.69 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 18.02% and a net margin of 7.69%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 9.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.28 earnings per share. Equities research analysts expect that Ecolab Inc. will post 4.93 EPS for the current fiscal year.
Ecolab Announces Dividend
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, April 17th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, March 21st will be given a dividend of $0.53 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, March 20th. This represents a $2.12 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.32%. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is currently 55.50%.
Insider Transactions at Ecolab
In related news, EVP Larry L. Berger sold 4,404 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction on Friday, March 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $162.95, for a total value of $717,631.80. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 12,442 shares in the company, valued at $2,027,423.90. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Company insiders own 1.04% of the company’s stock.
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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