Tredje AP fonden cut its position in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 7.4% in the fourth quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 22,236 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 1,779 shares during the quarter. Tredje AP fonden’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $4,302,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of the company. Altman Advisors Inc. raised its holdings in Ecolab by 0.6% in the fourth quarter. Altman Advisors Inc. now owns 8,783 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $1,695,000 after purchasing an additional 53 shares during the period. Gryphon Financial Partners LLC lifted its holdings in Ecolab by 3.7% in the 4th quarter. Gryphon Financial Partners LLC now owns 1,533 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $297,000 after purchasing an additional 54 shares in the last quarter. Pinnacle Associates Ltd. lifted its holdings in Ecolab by 2.1% in the 4th quarter. Pinnacle Associates Ltd. now owns 2,634 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $508,000 after purchasing an additional 55 shares in the last quarter. Corundum Group Inc. lifted its holdings in Ecolab by 4.0% in the 4th quarter. Corundum Group Inc. now owns 1,473 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $284,000 after purchasing an additional 56 shares in the last quarter. Finally, NEXT Financial Group Inc lifted its holdings in Ecolab by 3.5% in the 4th quarter. NEXT Financial Group Inc now owns 1,707 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $330,000 after purchasing an additional 57 shares in the last quarter. 74.98% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
In related news, EVP Michael C. Mccormick sold 4,900 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, February 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $206.53, for a total transaction of $1,011,997.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 59,430 shares in the company, valued at approximately $12,274,077.90. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, CEO Douglas M. Baker, Jr. sold 9,233 shares of the stock in a transaction on Sunday, February 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $207.66, for a total value of $1,917,324.78. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 750,104 shares in the company, valued at approximately $155,766,596.64. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 176,856 shares of company stock worth $36,521,858 in the last 90 days. 1.52% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
ECL has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. UBS Group boosted their price target on Ecolab from $198.00 to $210.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 19th. Stifel Nicolaus upped their price objective on Ecolab from $178.00 to $200.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 19th. Cfra upped their price objective on Ecolab from $185.00 to $195.00 and gave the stock a “sell” rating in a report on Tuesday, February 18th. Boenning Scattergood cut Ecolab from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, February 7th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their price objective on Ecolab from $186.00 to $192.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, December 20th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have assigned a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $203.77.
Shares of ECL traded down $7.88 during mid-day trading on Tuesday, hitting $194.64. 108,307 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,137,981. The company has a market cap of $59.81 billion, a PE ratio of 36.53, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.62 and a beta of 0.80. Ecolab Inc. has a 52-week low of $166.73 and a 52-week high of $211.24. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $199.13 and a two-hundred day moving average of $195.57. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.68, a quick ratio of 0.92 and a current ratio of 1.33.
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, February 18th. The basic materials company reported $1.66 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.70 by ($0.04). Ecolab had a return on equity of 20.11% and a net margin of 10.46%. The firm had revenue of $3.82 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.89 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.54 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 1.7% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts predict that Ecolab Inc. will post 6.37 EPS for the current year.
Ecolab Company 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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