Osborn Williams & Donohoe LLC lessened its stake in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 0.9% during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 50,952 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 446 shares during the period. Ecolab comprises about 1.2% of Osborn Williams & Donohoe LLC’s portfolio, making the stock its 26th biggest position. Osborn Williams & Donohoe LLC’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $6,837,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Augustine Asset Management Inc. grew its position in shares of Ecolab by 16.5% in the 4th quarter. Augustine Asset Management Inc. now owns 22,169 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,974,000 after buying an additional 3,133 shares during the last quarter. First Manhattan Co. grew its position in shares of Ecolab by 51.2% in the 4th quarter. First Manhattan Co. now owns 8,987 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,205,000 after buying an additional 3,044 shares during the last quarter. Chevy Chase Trust Holdings Inc. grew its position in shares of Ecolab by 0.8% in the 4th quarter. Chevy Chase Trust Holdings Inc. now owns 558,565 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $74,947,000 after buying an additional 4,670 shares during the last quarter. Patten & Patten Inc. TN grew its position in shares of Ecolab by 14.3% in the 4th quarter. Patten & Patten Inc. TN now owns 23,321 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $3,129,000 after buying an additional 2,925 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Intermede Investment Partners Ltd grew its position in shares of Ecolab by 5.0% in the 4th quarter. Intermede Investment Partners Ltd now owns 257,956 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $34,613,000 after buying an additional 12,212 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 76.60% of the company’s stock.

A number of equities research analysts have commented on ECL shares. Barclays reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $150.00 price target on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Wednesday, December 27th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Ecolab from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, November 2nd. Royal Bank of Canada upped their target price on Ecolab from $137.00 to $143.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Tuesday, November 7th. Jefferies Group upped their target price on Ecolab from $130.00 to $140.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 1st. Finally, Robert W. Baird restated a “hold” rating and set a $140.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Thursday, October 12th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. Ecolab has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $137.21.

In other news, Director David Maclennan purchased 450 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, November 6th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $131.77 per share, for a total transaction of $59,296.50. Following the completion of the acquisition, the director now owns 1,514 shares in the company, valued at $199,499.78. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Bruno Lavandier sold 347 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $134.77, for a total value of $46,765.19. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 7,615 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,026,273.55. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 57,446 shares of company stock worth $7,886,307. Corporate insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) traded up $1.40 during trading hours on Monday, reaching $139.75. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,068,300 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,032,400. The company has a market capitalization of $40,490.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 31.48, a P/E/G ratio of 2.06 and a beta of 1.05. The company has a current ratio of 1.23, a quick ratio of 0.83 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89. Ecolab Inc. has a 1-year low of $117.55 and a 1-year high of $139.97.

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

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, December 19th were issued a $0.41 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Monday, December 18th. This represents a $1.64 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.17%. This is a positive change from Ecolab’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.37. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is presently 33.33%.

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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.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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