Barclays Reiterates “Buy” Rating for Ecolab (ECL)

Barclays restated their buy rating on shares of Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday. Barclays currently has a $150.00 price target on the basic materials company’s stock.

A number of other research analysts also recently commented on the company. Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a hold rating on shares of Ecolab in a report on Wednesday, September 6th. Royal Bank of Canada increased their target price on Ecolab from $134.00 to $137.00 and gave the stock an outperform rating in a report on Tuesday, September 12th. Zacks Investment Research raised Ecolab from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Thursday, November 2nd. Canaccord Genuity reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $145.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a report on Monday, September 11th. Finally, Nomura reaffirmed a hold rating and set a $117.00 target price (down previously from $120.00) on shares of Ecolab in a report on Tuesday, September 12th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have given a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $137.21.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) opened at $134.18 on Wednesday. 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 has a 1-year low of $116.92 and a 1-year high of $137.96. The company has a market capitalization of $38,766.48, a P/E ratio of 30.15, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.24 and a beta of 1.05.

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

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, December 19th will be given a dividend of $0.41 per share. This represents a $1.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.22%. This is a boost from Ecolab’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.37. The ex-dividend date is Monday, December 18th. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is presently 33.26%.

In other news, 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 transaction of $46,765.19. Following the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 7,615 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,026,273.55. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, EVP Michael A. Hickey sold 19,300 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, December 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $137.54, for a total value of $2,654,522.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 43,262 shares in the company, valued at $5,950,255.48. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 57,446 shares of company stock worth $7,886,307 over the last quarter. Insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. TCI Wealth Advisors Inc. increased its position in Ecolab by 4.8% in the 2nd quarter. TCI Wealth Advisors Inc. now owns 763 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $101,000 after acquiring an additional 35 shares during the period. Atlantic Trust LLC acquired a new stake in Ecolab in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $106,000. IHT Wealth Management LLC increased its position in Ecolab by 4.9% in the 2nd quarter. IHT Wealth Management LLC now owns 811 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $116,000 after acquiring an additional 38 shares during the period. Atwood & Palmer Inc. increased its position in Ecolab by 2.9% in the 2nd quarter. Atwood & Palmer Inc. now owns 892 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $118,000 after acquiring an additional 25 shares during the period. Finally, Sphera Funds Management LTD. acquired a new stake in Ecolab in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $133,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 76.54% of the company’s stock.

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Ecolab Company 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.

Analyst Recommendations for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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