Cwm LLC boosted its holdings in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 6.7% in the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 38,953 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after buying an additional 2,435 shares during the quarter. Cwm LLC’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $5,227,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other large investors have also modified their holdings of ECL. BlackRock Inc. increased its position in shares of Ecolab by 2.0% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 15,325,707 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,034,488,000 after purchasing an additional 293,303 shares during the last quarter. Amalgamated Bank increased its position in shares of Ecolab by 53.5% during the 2nd quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 30,352 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $4,029,000 after purchasing an additional 10,579 shares during the last quarter. Investment Centers of America Inc. increased its position in shares of Ecolab by 1.3% during the 2nd quarter. Investment Centers of America Inc. now owns 6,520 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $866,000 after purchasing an additional 83 shares during the last quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. increased its position in shares of Ecolab by 1.5% during the 2nd quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 355,850 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $47,239,000 after purchasing an additional 5,189 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Sandy Spring Bank increased its position in shares of Ecolab by 0.8% during the 2nd quarter. Sandy Spring Bank now owns 4,311 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $572,000 after purchasing an additional 34 shares during the last quarter. 76.57% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

In other Ecolab news, SVP Bruno Lavandier sold 1,250 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $135.71, for a total value of $169,637.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 7,725 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,048,359.75. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CEO Douglas M. Baker, Jr. sold 18,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $137.09, for a total value of $2,467,620.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 427,548 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $58,612,555.32. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 57,446 shares of company stock valued at $7,886,307 over the last 90 days. 1.49% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Ecolab Inc. (ECL) opened at $137.02 on Wednesday. Ecolab Inc. has a 52 week low of $117.55 and a 52 week high of $138.68. The company has a quick ratio of 0.83, a current ratio of 1.23 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89. The firm has a market capitalization of $39,777.72, a P/E ratio of 30.79, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.04 and a beta of 1.05.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 31st. The basic materials company reported $1.37 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.36 by $0.01. Ecolab had a return on equity of 19.05% and a net margin of 9.67%. The business had revenue of $3.56 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.55 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $1.28 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.2% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts anticipate that Ecolab Inc. will post 4.7 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, December 19th were paid a $0.41 dividend. This represents a $1.64 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.20%. This is an increase from Ecolab’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.37. The ex-dividend date was Monday, December 18th. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is presently 33.26%.

Several equities research analysts have recently commented on the stock. UBS Group boosted their price objective on Ecolab from $147.00 to $148.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. Royal Bank of Canada boosted their price objective on Ecolab from $137.00 to $143.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Tuesday, November 7th. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $140.00 price objective on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Ecolab from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, November 2nd. Finally, Citigroup downgraded Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Friday, January 5th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have given a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $137.21.

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Ecolab Profile

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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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