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Williams Jones Wealth Management LLC. Reduces Stock Holdings in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL)

Williams Jones Wealth Management LLC. trimmed its position in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECLGet Rating) by 4.5% during the 1st quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The firm owned 849,699 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 39,655 shares during the period. Ecolab comprises about 2.1% of Williams Jones Wealth Management LLC.’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 13th biggest position. Williams Jones Wealth Management LLC.’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $150,023,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other institutional investors and hedge funds have also bought and sold shares of ECL. Qube Research & Technologies Ltd boosted its position in Ecolab by 1,371.2% in the fourth quarter. Qube Research & Technologies Ltd now owns 107,563 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $25,233,000 after purchasing an additional 100,252 shares during the last quarter. abrdn plc lifted its position in shares of Ecolab by 14.7% during the 4th quarter. abrdn plc now owns 260,498 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $61,110,000 after buying an additional 33,454 shares in the last quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas lifted its position in shares of Ecolab by 21.3% during the 4th quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas now owns 49,984 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $11,726,000 after buying an additional 8,778 shares in the last quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA lifted its position in shares of Ecolab by 19.8% during the 4th quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 28,977 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $6,798,000 after buying an additional 4,783 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Capital Fund Management S.A. lifted its position in shares of Ecolab by 180.9% during the 4th quarter. Capital Fund Management S.A. now owns 32,267 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $7,570,000 after buying an additional 20,778 shares in the last quarter. 87.71% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Ecolab Price Performance

ECL opened at $172.64 on Friday. The business has a fifty day moving average of $164.45 and a 200 day moving average of $166.34. Ecolab Inc. has a 52-week low of $143.82 and a 52-week high of $238.93. The company has a quick ratio of 0.84, a current ratio of 1.29 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.15. The stock has a market cap of $49.20 billion, a P/E ratio of 44.96, a PEG ratio of 2.82 and a beta of 1.01.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECLGet Rating) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 26th. The basic materials company reported $1.10 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.07 by $0.03. Ecolab had a return on equity of 18.56% and a net margin of 8.17%. The company had revenue of $3.58 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.48 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $1.22 EPS. Ecolab’s revenue was up 13.2% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, sell-side analysts anticipate that Ecolab Inc. will post 4.78 EPS for the current year.

Ecolab Announces Dividend

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 17th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, September 20th will be issued a $0.51 dividend. This represents a $2.04 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.18%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, September 19th. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is 53.13%.

Wall Street Analysts Forecast Growth

A number of research analysts have recently weighed in on the company. Bank of America cut Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and lowered their price objective for the company from $193.00 to $183.00 in a research report on Wednesday, July 13th. Credit Suisse Group raised Ecolab from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and lifted their price objective for the stock from $180.00 to $195.00 in a research note on Friday, June 3rd. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft reduced their price objective on Ecolab from $195.00 to $180.00 in a research note on Wednesday, July 27th. BMO Capital Markets began coverage on Ecolab in a research note on Friday, June 3rd. They issued a “hold” rating and a $191.00 price objective on the stock. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company began coverage on Ecolab in a research note on Tuesday, July 12th. They issued an “overweight” rating and a $187.00 price objective on the stock. Nine investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Based on data from MarketBeat, the company currently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus target price of $193.78.

Insiders Place Their Bets

In other Ecolab news, Director Arthur J. Higgins sold 3,200 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $166.74, for a total value of $533,568.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 22,530 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,756,652.20. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. In related news, EVP Angela M. Busch sold 2,300 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, September 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $170.66, for a total transaction of $392,518.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 16,716 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,852,752.56. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director Arthur J. Higgins sold 3,200 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $166.74, for a total value of $533,568.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 22,530 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,756,652.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders bought 274,284 shares of company stock worth $47,244,385. 1.04% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Ecolab Company Profile

(Get Rating)

Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene, and infection prevention solutions and services in the United States and internationally. The company operates through Global Industrial, Global Institutional & Specialty, and Global Healthcare & Life Sciences segments. The Global Industrial segment offers water treatment and process applications, and cleaning and sanitizing solutions to manufacturing, food and beverage processing, transportation, chemical, metals and mining, power generation, pulp and paper, commercial laundry, petroleum, refining, and petrochemical industries.

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