Teachers Advisors LLC boosted its stake in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 3.5% in the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 447,826 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after buying an additional 15,279 shares during the period. Teachers Advisors LLC owned 0.15% of Ecolab worth $59,449,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in ECL. CGOV Asset Management grew its position in Ecolab by 5.3% in the 1st quarter. CGOV Asset Management now owns 540,525 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $90,256,000 after buying an additional 27,135 shares in the last quarter. C WorldWide Group Holding A S grew its position in Ecolab by 10.8% in the 1st quarter. C WorldWide Group Holding A S now owns 3,418,975 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $428,535,000 after buying an additional 333,261 shares in the last quarter. Webster Bank N. A. grew its position in Ecolab by 7.4% in the 1st quarter. Webster Bank N. A. now owns 29,355 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $3,679,000 after buying an additional 2,030 shares in the last quarter. Parnassus Investments CA grew its position in Ecolab by 33.3% in the 1st quarter. Parnassus Investments CA now owns 300,000 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $37,602,000 after buying an additional 75,000 shares in the last quarter. Finally, State Treasurer State of Michigan grew its position in Ecolab by 0.5% in the 1st quarter. State Treasurer State of Michigan now owns 86,229 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $10,808,000 after buying an additional 400 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 75.54% of the company’s stock.
Shares of Ecolab Inc. (ECL) opened at 131.05 on Friday. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $131.31 and its 200-day moving average is $129.38. The stock has a market capitalization of $37.92 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.96 and a beta of 0.99. Ecolab Inc. has a 1-year low of $110.65 and a 1-year high of $134.89.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, August 1st. The basic materials company reported $1.13 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.12 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $3.46 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.40 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 18.93% and a net margin of 9.66%. The company’s revenue was up 4.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.08 earnings per share. On average, analysts predict that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.74 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 16th. Investors of record on Tuesday, September 19th will be given a $0.37 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, September 18th. This represents a $1.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.13%. Ecolab’s payout ratio is 33.79%.
In other news, major shareholder William H. Gates III acquired 75,500 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 3rd. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $132.57 per share, for a total transaction of $10,009,035.00. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Thomas W. Handley sold 7,397 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $130.63, for a total value of $966,270.11. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.49% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
ECL has been the subject of a number of recent analyst reports. Canaccord Genuity increased their target price on shares of Ecolab from $135.00 to $145.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, July 28th. UBS AG reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $147.00 target price (up previously from $144.00) on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Wednesday, August 2nd. Morgan Stanley initiated coverage on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Tuesday, August 15th. They issued an “equal weight” rating and a $140.00 target price for the company. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $130.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Wednesday, August 16th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group set a $128.00 target price on shares of Ecolab and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 3rd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $133.93.
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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