Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) reached a new 52-week high during trading on Thursday . The stock traded as high as $138.87 and last traded at $137.43, with a volume of 1131800 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $137.02.

Several research firms have commented on ECL. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Ecolab from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 3rd. Citigroup lowered shares of Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, January 5th. UBS Group upped their price target on shares of Ecolab from $147.00 to $148.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 1st. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $140.00 price target on shares of Ecolab in a report on Wednesday, November 1st. Finally, Robert W. Baird reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $140.00 price target on shares of Ecolab in a report on Thursday, October 12th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $137.21.

The firm has a market capitalization of $39,970.00, a PE ratio of 31.16, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.03 and a beta of 1.05. The company has a quick ratio of 0.83, a current ratio of 1.23 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89.

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

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, December 19th were given a $0.41 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Monday, December 18th. This represents a $1.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.19%. This is an increase from Ecolab’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.37. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is 33.33%.

In other Ecolab news, CEO Douglas M. Baker, Jr. sold 18,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $137.09, for a total value of $2,467,620.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 427,548 shares in the company, valued at $58,612,555.32. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, EVP Michael A. Hickey sold 19,300 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, December 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $137.54, for a total transaction of $2,654,522.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 43,262 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,950,255.48. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 57,446 shares of company stock valued at $7,886,307. Insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. Sterling Capital Management LLC raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 1,397.8% during the 3rd quarter. Sterling Capital Management LLC now owns 570,435 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $73,364,000 after purchasing an additional 532,349 shares during the last quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 475.4% during the 3rd quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC now owns 548,104 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $70,492,000 after purchasing an additional 452,846 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 1.9% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 20,842,027 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $2,766,780,000 after purchasing an additional 387,804 shares during the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 66.9% during the 2nd quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 918,902 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $121,984,000 after purchasing an additional 368,376 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. raised its position in shares of Ecolab by 386.2% during the 3rd quarter. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. now owns 305,019 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $39,228,000 after purchasing an additional 242,284 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 76.57% of the company’s stock.

ILLEGAL ACTIVITY NOTICE: This report was first published by The Cerbat Gem and is the property of of The Cerbat Gem. If you are accessing this report on another domain, it was illegally copied and republished in violation of US and international trademark & copyright legislation. The correct version of this report can be viewed at https://www.thecerbatgem.com/2018/01/18/ecolab-ecl-reaches-new-1-year-high-at-138-87.html.

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.

Receive News & Stock Ratings for Ecolab Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Ecolab and related stocks with our FREE daily email newsletter.