NGAM Advisors L.P. increased its stake in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 1.1% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 70,241 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after buying an additional 762 shares during the period. NGAM Advisors L.P.’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $9,324,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Several other hedge funds also recently added to or reduced their stakes in ECL. Alta Capital Management LLC increased its stake in Ecolab by 0.3% in the first quarter. Alta Capital Management LLC now owns 391,385 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $49,056,000 after buying an additional 1,233 shares during the period. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC increased its stake in Ecolab by 0.3% in the first quarter. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC now owns 116,102 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $14,551,000 after buying an additional 385 shares during the period. Barometer Capital Management Inc. bought a new stake in Ecolab during the first quarter valued at about $201,000. Patten & Patten Inc. TN increased its stake in Ecolab by 56.6% in the first quarter. Patten & Patten Inc. TN now owns 20,413 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,559,000 after buying an additional 7,375 shares during the period. Finally, DnB Asset Management AS increased its stake in Ecolab by 14.4% in the first quarter. DnB Asset Management AS now owns 31,858 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $3,993,000 after buying an additional 4,000 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 75.73% of the company’s stock.

Ecolab Inc. (ECL) opened at 131.15 on Wednesday. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $132.16 and a 200 day moving average price of $128.04. Ecolab Inc. has a 12-month low of $110.65 and a 12-month high of $134.89. The firm has a market cap of $37.95 billion, a PE ratio of 29.98 and a beta of 0.98.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 1st. The basic materials company reported $1.13 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.12 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $3.46 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.40 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 18.93% and a net margin of 9.66%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $1.08 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 4.4% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts forecast that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.80 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 16th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, September 19th will be issued a dividend of $0.37 per share. This represents a $1.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.13%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, September 18th. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is presently 33.79%.

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Several analysts have recently issued reports on the company. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $141.00 price target (up previously from $133.00) on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Friday, June 2nd. Credit Suisse Group set a $128.00 target price on Ecolab and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 3rd. Stifel Nicolaus restated a “hold” rating and set a $130.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Thursday, August 3rd. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Finally, Canaccord Genuity increased their target price on Ecolab from $135.00 to $145.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 28th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $133.87.

In other news, SVP Bruno Lavandier sold 1,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, June 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $133.52, for a total transaction of $133,520.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 8,922 shares in the company, valued at $1,191,265.44. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, major shareholder William H. Gates III acquired 75,500 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 3rd. The shares were purchased at an average price of $132.57 per share, with a total value of $10,009,035.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 44,810 shares of company stock valued at $5,897,361. Corporate insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

About Ecolab

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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