Eagle Ridge Investment Management Sells 70 Shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL)

Eagle Ridge Investment Management reduced its stake in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 3.8% during the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 1,784 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 70 shares during the period. Eagle Ridge Investment Management’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $352,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other large investors also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Sigma Planning Corp bought a new position in shares of Ecolab in the 2nd quarter worth $363,000. TRUE Private Wealth Advisors bought a new position in shares of Ecolab in the 2nd quarter worth $159,000. Ardevora Asset Management LLP boosted its position in shares of Ecolab by 0.3% in the 2nd quarter. Ardevora Asset Management LLP now owns 218,300 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $43,101,000 after purchasing an additional 600 shares during the last quarter. Sandy Spring Bank boosted its position in shares of Ecolab by 2.2% in the 2nd quarter. Sandy Spring Bank now owns 3,624 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $715,000 after purchasing an additional 79 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Chesapeake Wealth Management bought a new position in shares of Ecolab in the 2nd quarter worth $882,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 75.32% of the company’s stock.

In other Ecolab news, EVP Alex N. Blanco sold 51,400 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $203.07, for a total value of $10,437,798.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 59,425 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $12,067,434.75. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, Director Victoria Reich sold 1,500 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction dated Thursday, June 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $199.25, for a total value of $298,875.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 20,987 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,181,659.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 95,650 shares of company stock worth $18,898,540 in the last three months. Company insiders own 1.52% of the company’s stock.

ECL has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. Nomura lifted their target price on Ecolab from $208.00 to $210.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 7th. Argus lifted their target price on Ecolab from $180.00 to $200.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 1st. BMO Capital Markets lifted their target price on Ecolab from $180.00 to $208.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a report on Monday, August 5th. Citigroup lifted their target price on Ecolab from $190.00 to $206.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, August 2nd. Finally, Bank of America reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $200.00 target price (up from $178.00) on shares of Ecolab in a report on Wednesday, May 1st. Twelve research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $192.00.

Shares of ECL traded up $1.27 during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $202.91. The stock had a trading volume of 18,634 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,015,294. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $199.06. Ecolab Inc. has a twelve month low of $135.77 and a twelve month high of $209.24. The firm has a market capitalization of $58.50 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 38.69, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.78 and a beta of 0.84. The company has a current ratio of 1.18, a quick ratio of 0.78 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 30th. The basic materials company reported $1.42 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.41 by $0.01. Ecolab had a return on equity of 19.81% and a net margin of 10.12%. The firm had revenue of $3.76 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.79 billion. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $1.27 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.9% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts predict that Ecolab Inc. will post 5.92 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 15th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, September 17th will be paid a $0.46 dividend. This represents a $1.84 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.91%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, September 16th. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio 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.

Further Reading: Golden Cross

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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