Noesis Capital Mangement Corp decreased its holdings in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 3.6% in the 1st quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 53,353 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 2,001 shares during the quarter. Ecolab accounts for about 3.4% of Noesis Capital Mangement Corp’s portfolio, making the stock its 11th largest holding. Noesis Capital Mangement Corp’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $9,419,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of ECL. Private Ocean LLC bought a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the 1st quarter valued at approximately $29,000. Tributary Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the 4th quarter valued at approximately $25,000. Athena Capital Advisors LLC bought a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the 4th quarter valued at approximately $25,000. Liberty Wealth Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the 4th quarter valued at approximately $27,000. Finally, Ruggie Capital Group bought a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the 4th quarter valued at approximately $30,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 75.60% of the company’s stock.
Shares of NYSE ECL remained flat at $$182.48 during midday trading on Friday. 673,156 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,012,049. The firm has a market cap of $52.60 billion, a P/E ratio of 34.76, a P/E/G ratio of 2.49 and a beta of 0.89. Ecolab Inc. has a 1 year low of $135.77 and a 1 year high of $186.34. The company has a quick ratio of 0.75, a current ratio of 1.14 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.73.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, April 30th. The basic materials company reported $1.03 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.02 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $3.51 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.57 billion. Ecolab had a net margin of 10.06% and a return on equity of 19.50%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.91 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts expect that Ecolab Inc. will post 5.9 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 15th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, June 18th will be given a $0.46 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, June 17th. This represents a $1.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.01%. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 35.05%.
In related news, EVP Timothy P. Mulhere sold 11,600 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, March 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $174.39, for a total transaction of $2,022,924.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 34,666 shares in the company, valued at approximately $6,045,403.74. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, CFO Daniel J. Schmechel sold 9,799 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, March 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $169.93, for a total transaction of $1,665,144.07. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 171,040 shares in the company, valued at approximately $29,064,827.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 339,633 shares of company stock worth $58,450,959 in the last 90 days. Corporate insiders own 1.52% of the company’s stock.
ECL has been the topic of several research reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lowered shares of Ecolab from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their price target for the company from $157.00 to $167.00 in a report on Wednesday, February 20th. Canaccord Genuity reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $186.00 price target (up from $160.00) on shares of Ecolab in a report on Wednesday, February 20th. Boenning Scattergood reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $210.00 price target on shares of Ecolab in a report on Tuesday, February 5th. Nomura decreased their price target on shares of Ecolab from $210.00 to $208.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, May 2nd. Finally, BMO Capital Markets lifted their price target on shares of Ecolab from $169.00 to $180.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a report on Thursday, May 2nd. Eleven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $180.93.
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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