Sphera Funds Management LTD. increased its position in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 100.0% during the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 2,000 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after buying an additional 1,000 shares during the period. Sphera Funds Management LTD.’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $257,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also recently modified their holdings of the company. Rench Wealth Management Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 0.3% in the second quarter. Rench Wealth Management Inc. now owns 3,004 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $399,000 after purchasing an additional 9 shares during the last quarter. Green Square Capital LLC increased its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 0.3% in the second quarter. Green Square Capital LLC now owns 2,836 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $377,000 after purchasing an additional 9 shares during the last quarter. Ironwood Investment Management LLC increased its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 0.7% in the second quarter. Ironwood Investment Management LLC now owns 2,708 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $359,000 after purchasing an additional 19 shares during the last quarter. Atwood & Palmer Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 2.9% in the second quarter. Atwood & Palmer Inc. now owns 892 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $118,000 after purchasing an additional 25 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Progressive Investment Management Corp increased its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 0.7% in the second quarter. Progressive Investment Management Corp now owns 4,603 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $611,000 after purchasing an additional 33 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 75.74% of the company’s stock.

Several research firms have commented on ECL. Credit Suisse Group reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Ecolab in a report on Wednesday, September 6th. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $130.00 price objective on shares of Ecolab in a report on Thursday, August 3rd. Robert W. Baird reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $140.00 price objective on shares of Ecolab in a report on Thursday, October 12th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, July 27th. Finally, Royal Bank Of Canada upped their price objective on shares of Ecolab from $137.00 to $143.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Tuesday, November 7th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $136.86.

Shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) traded up $0.54 during trading on Friday, hitting $132.99. 1,331,200 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 936,676. The company has a market capitalization of $38,422.71, a PE ratio of 29.23, a PEG ratio of 2.22 and a beta of 1.04. Ecolab Inc. has a 52 week low of $115.78 and a 52 week high of $134.89. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89, a quick ratio of 0.83 and a current ratio of 1.23.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, October 31st. The basic materials company reported $1.37 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.36 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $3.56 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.55 billion. Ecolab had a net margin of 9.67% and a return on equity of 19.05%. Ecolab’s quarterly revenue was up 5.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $1.28 earnings per share. equities analysts anticipate that Ecolab Inc. will post 4.7 EPS for the current year.

In other news, Director David Maclennan acquired 450 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 6th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $131.77 per share, with a total value of $59,296.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 1,514 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $199,499.78. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Thomas W. Handley sold 7,397 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $130.63, for a total transaction of $966,270.11. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

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Ecolab Company Profile

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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