Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) Stock Position Increased by Van Strum & Towne Inc.

Van Strum & Towne Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 0.6% during the 1st quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 35,478 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after acquiring an additional 222 shares during the period. Ecolab accounts for approximately 4.7% of Van Strum & Towne Inc.’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 4th biggest holding. Van Strum & Towne Inc.’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $6,263,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of the company. Athena Capital Advisors LLC acquired a new position in Ecolab during the fourth quarter worth $25,000. Liberty Wealth Management LLC acquired a new stake in Ecolab during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $27,000. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund raised its stake in Ecolab by 14,455.4% during the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 4,084,837 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $28,000 after buying an additional 4,056,773 shares in the last quarter. Private Ocean LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the 1st quarter worth approximately $29,000. Finally, Ruggie Capital Group acquired a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the 4th quarter worth approximately $30,000. 75.22% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

In related news, SVP Bruno Lavandier sold 2,969 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $183.27, for a total value of $544,128.63. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 7,732 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,417,043.64. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Victoria Reich sold 1,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, June 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $199.25, for a total transaction of $298,875.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 20,987 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,181,659.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 76,519 shares of company stock worth $14,253,673. 1.52% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of equities analysts have issued reports on ECL shares. Canaccord Genuity increased their price target on Ecolab from $186.00 to $198.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 1st. Zacks Investment Research lowered Ecolab from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, April 24th. Argus increased their price objective on Ecolab from $180.00 to $200.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 1st. Nomura cut their price objective on Ecolab from $210.00 to $208.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Thursday, May 2nd. Finally, UBS Group increased their price objective on Ecolab from $186.00 to $191.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 1st. Eleven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $180.93.

NYSE:ECL traded up $5.24 on Friday, hitting $197.44. 5,929,222 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,104,752. The business has a 50-day simple moving average of $188.12. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.73, a quick ratio of 0.75 and a current ratio of 1.14. Ecolab Inc. has a 52 week low of $135.77 and a 52 week high of $200.93. The stock has a market capitalization of $54.26 billion, a P/E ratio of 37.61, a P/E/G ratio of 2.56 and a beta of 0.83.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, April 30th. The basic materials company reported $1.03 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.02 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $3.51 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.57 billion. Ecolab had a net margin of 10.06% and a return on equity of 19.50%. Ecolab’s quarterly revenue was up 1.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.91 EPS. Research analysts anticipate that Ecolab Inc. will post 5.9 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 15th. Investors of record on Tuesday, June 18th will be paid a $0.46 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, June 17th. This represents a $1.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.93%. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 35.05%.

Ecolab Profile

Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene, and energy technologies and services worldwide. The company operates through Global Industrial, Global Institutional, Global Energy, and Other segments. The Global Industrial segment offers water treatment and process applications, and cleaning and sanitizing solutions primarily to industrial customers within the manufacturing, food and beverage processing, transportation, chemical, primary metals and mining, power generation, pulp and paper, pharmaceutical, and commercial laundry.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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