Huntington National Bank lowered its stake in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 2.2% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund owned 100,274 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 2,247 shares during the period. Huntington National Bank’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $13,312,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently bought and sold shares of the company. FUKOKU MUTUAL LIFE INSURANCE Co increased its position in Ecolab by 60.0% in the first quarter. FUKOKU MUTUAL LIFE INSURANCE Co now owns 800 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $100,000 after buying an additional 300 shares during the last quarter. JNBA Financial Advisors raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 2.5% in the first quarter. JNBA Financial Advisors now owns 871 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $109,000 after buying an additional 21 shares during the period. Harfst & Associates Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the first quarter valued at $117,000. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 0.7% in the first quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America now owns 1,012 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $127,000 after buying an additional 7 shares during the period. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue acquired a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the first quarter valued at $134,000. Institutional investors own 75.84% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Ecolab Inc. (ECL) traded up 0.1295% during trading on Friday, hitting $132.7917. 200,728 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. The stock has a market cap of $38.48 billion, a PE ratio of 30.3593 and a beta of 0.98. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $132.62 and its 200-day moving average price is $127.25. Ecolab Inc. has a 1-year low of $110.65 and a 1-year high of $134.89.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 1st. The basic materials company reported $1.13 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.12 by $0.01. Ecolab had a net margin of 9.66% and a return on equity of 18.93%. The company had revenue of $3.46 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.40 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.08 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 4.4% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts expect that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.80 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 16th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, September 19th will be paid a $0.37 dividend. This represents a $1.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.12%. Ecolab’s payout ratio is currently 33.79%.

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Several brokerages have recently weighed in on ECL. Credit Suisse Group set a $128.00 target price on shares of Ecolab and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $130.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Thursday. Canaccord Genuity lifted their target price on shares of Ecolab from $135.00 to $145.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, July 28th. J P Morgan Chase & Co upgraded shares of Ecolab from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and lifted their target price for the company from $120.00 to $138.00 in a research report on Friday, May 26th. Finally, UBS AG reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $147.00 target price (up from $144.00) on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Wednesday. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company. Ecolab currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $133.43.

In other news, EVP Michael A. Hickey sold 13,700 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $131.30, for a total value of $1,798,810.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Stephen M. Taylor sold 23,151 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, June 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $133.06, for a total transaction of $3,080,472.06. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 44,466 shares in the company, valued at $5,916,645.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 44,810 shares of company stock worth $5,897,361. 1.49% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

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.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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