Tranquility Partners LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) in the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund acquired 1,711 shares of the basic materials company’s stock, valued at approximately $338,000.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in ECL. Wesbanco Bank Inc. lifted its holdings in Ecolab by 3.8% in the 2nd quarter. Wesbanco Bank Inc. now owns 1,723 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $340,000 after buying an additional 63 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 3.4% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 17,657,493 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $3,486,296,000 after acquiring an additional 578,662 shares in the last quarter. Nomura Asset Management Co. Ltd. boosted its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 18.6% in the second quarter. Nomura Asset Management Co. Ltd. now owns 65,151 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $12,863,000 after acquiring an additional 10,213 shares in the last quarter. HighTower Advisors LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 4.8% in the second quarter. HighTower Advisors LLC now owns 28,168 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $5,576,000 after acquiring an additional 1,292 shares in the last quarter. Finally, United Capital Financial Advisers LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 9.9% in the second quarter. United Capital Financial Advisers LLC now owns 74,726 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $14,754,000 after acquiring an additional 6,744 shares in the last quarter. 76.12% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

ECL has been the subject of several recent analyst reports. UBS Group set a $202.00 price objective on shares of Ecolab and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 31st. Canaccord Genuity increased their price objective on shares of Ecolab from $198.00 to $222.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 31st. Morgan Stanley increased their price objective on shares of Ecolab from $140.00 to $205.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a report on Monday, August 12th. Credit Suisse Group set a $181.00 target price on shares of Ecolab and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 31st. Finally, Nomura increased their target price on shares of Ecolab from $208.00 to $210.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 7th. Twelve investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $192.00.

In other Ecolab news, EVP Darrell R. Brown sold 2,280 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $207.95, for a total value of $474,126.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 8,061 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,676,284.95. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, EVP Darrell R. Brown sold 12,678 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $198.09, for a total transaction of $2,511,385.02. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 21,061 shares in the company, valued at $4,171,973.49. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 66,358 shares of company stock worth $13,423,309 over the last quarter. 1.52% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

ECL stock traded up $1.12 during midday trading on Friday, reaching $198.89. The company had a trading volume of 897,279 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,064,806. Ecolab Inc. has a 1 year low of $135.77 and a 1 year high of $209.87. The company has a current ratio of 1.18, a quick ratio of 0.78 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72. The company has a market capitalization of $56.91 billion, a P/E ratio of 37.88, a PEG ratio of 2.69 and a beta of 0.82. The company has a 50 day moving average of $203.36 and a two-hundred day moving average of $189.36.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 30th. The basic materials company reported $1.42 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.41 by $0.01. Ecolab had a net margin of 10.12% and a return on equity of 19.81%. The company had revenue of $3.76 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.79 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $1.27 EPS. Ecolab’s quarterly revenue was up 1.9% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Ecolab Inc. will post 5.91 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 15th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, September 17th will be paid a dividend of $0.46 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, September 16th. This represents a $1.84 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.93%. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 35.05%.

About Ecolab

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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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