Solaris Asset Management LLC reduced its stake in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 0.8% during the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 21,864 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 172 shares during the period. Ecolab accounts for 1.8% of Solaris Asset Management LLC’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 26th largest position. Solaris Asset Management LLC’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $2,902,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Several other hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in ECL. First Citizens Bank & Trust Co. bought a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the first quarter valued at about $3,507,000. ProShare Advisors LLC raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 2.5% in the first quarter. ProShare Advisors LLC now owns 492,950 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $61,786,000 after buying an additional 11,847 shares during the period. Korea Investment CORP raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 180.0% in the first quarter. Korea Investment CORP now owns 67,507 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $8,461,000 after buying an additional 43,397 shares during the period. Intermede Investment Partners Ltd raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 7.6% in the first quarter. Intermede Investment Partners Ltd now owns 215,880 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $27,058,000 after buying an additional 15,214 shares during the period. Finally, GW Henssler & Associates Ltd. raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 3.3% in the first quarter. GW Henssler & Associates Ltd. now owns 90,207 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $11,306,000 after buying an additional 2,875 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 75.73% of the company’s stock.

Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) opened at 130.78 on Thursday. Ecolab Inc. has a 52-week low of $110.65 and a 52-week high of $134.89. The firm has a market capitalization of $37.85 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.90 and a beta of 0.98. The company’s 50-day moving average is $131.92 and its 200-day moving average is $128.42.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, August 1st. The basic materials company reported $1.13 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.12 by $0.01. Ecolab had a return on equity of 18.93% and a net margin of 9.66%. The company had revenue of $3.46 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.40 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $1.08 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.4% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts predict that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.80 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 16th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, September 19th will be paid a dividend of $0.37 per share. The ex-dividend date is Monday, September 18th. This represents a $1.48 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.13%. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 33.79%.

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Several analysts have recently issued reports on the stock. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reiterated an “outperform” rating and issued a $141.00 target price (up previously from $133.00) on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Friday, June 2nd. 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, August 3rd. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $130.00 target price on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Thursday, August 3rd. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 27th. Finally, 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. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $134.20.

In other Ecolab news, SVP Bruno Lavandier sold 1,000 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, June 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $133.52, for a total transaction of $133,520.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 8,922 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,191,265.44. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, EVP Stephen M. Taylor sold 23,151 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $133.06, for a total value of $3,080,472.06. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 44,466 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,916,645.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 37,851 shares of company stock worth $5,012,802. Company insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

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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