Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) – Equities researchers at Seaport Global Securities reduced their Q3 2017 earnings per share (EPS) estimates for Ecolab in a note issued to investors on Friday. Seaport Global Securities analyst M. Harrison now anticipates that the basic materials company will earn $1.36 per share for the quarter, down from their previous estimate of $1.40. Seaport Global Securities also issued estimates for Ecolab’s Q4 2018 earnings at $1.60 EPS.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, August 1st. The basic materials company reported $1.13 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.12 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $3.46 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.40 billion. Ecolab had a net margin of 9.66% and a return on equity of 18.93%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 4.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $1.08 EPS.

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A number of other brokerages have also recently weighed in on ECL. J P Morgan Chase & Co raised shares of Ecolab from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and lifted their price target for the company from $120.00 to $138.00 in a research report on Friday, May 26th. UBS AG reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $147.00 price target (up from $144.00) on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Wednesday, August 2nd. Jefferies Group LLC reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $130.00 price target on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Wednesday, August 16th. Credit Suisse Group reissued a “hold” rating on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. Finally, BidaskClub raised shares of Ecolab from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 23rd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $133.57.

Shares of Ecolab (NYSE ECL) opened at 129.83 on Monday. Ecolab has a 12-month low of $110.65 and a 12-month high of $134.89. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $131.58 and its 200-day moving average is $129.28. The firm has a market capitalization of $37.57 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.68 and a beta of 0.99.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 16th. Investors of record on Tuesday, September 19th will be issued a $0.37 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, September 18th. This represents a $1.48 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.14%. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is presently 33.79%.

In related news, major shareholder William H. Gates III purchased 75,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 3rd. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $132.57 per share, with a total value of $10,009,035.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Corporate insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of ECL. FUKOKU MUTUAL LIFE INSURANCE Co raised its holdings 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 acquiring an additional 300 shares in the last quarter. TCI Wealth Advisors Inc. raised its holdings in Ecolab by 4.8% in the second 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 in the last quarter. Atlantic Trust LLC acquired a new stake in Ecolab in the second quarter valued at $106,000. JNBA Financial Advisors raised its holdings in 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 acquiring an additional 21 shares in the last quarter. Finally, IHT Wealth Management LLC raised its holdings in Ecolab by 4.9% in the second 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 in the last quarter. 75.54% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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.

Earnings History and Estimates for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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