Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. cut its position in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 15.3% in the fourth quarter, Holdings Channel.com reports. The institutional investor owned 41,357 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 7,464 shares during the period. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc.’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $7,981,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other hedge funds have also recently bought and sold shares of the business. Altman Advisors Inc. increased its stake in shares of Ecolab by 0.6% in the fourth quarter. Altman Advisors Inc. now owns 8,783 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $1,695,000 after acquiring an additional 53 shares during the last quarter. Gryphon Financial Partners LLC grew its stake in Ecolab by 3.7% in the fourth quarter. Gryphon Financial Partners LLC now owns 1,533 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $297,000 after purchasing an additional 54 shares in the last quarter. Pinnacle Associates Ltd. increased its position in Ecolab by 2.1% in the 4th quarter. Pinnacle Associates Ltd. now owns 2,634 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $508,000 after purchasing an additional 55 shares during the last quarter. Corundum Group Inc. increased its position in Ecolab by 4.0% in the 4th quarter. Corundum Group Inc. now owns 1,473 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $284,000 after purchasing an additional 56 shares during the last quarter. Finally, NEXT Financial Group Inc increased its position in Ecolab by 3.5% in the 4th quarter. NEXT Financial Group Inc now owns 1,707 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $330,000 after purchasing an additional 57 shares during the last quarter. 74.89% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

ECL stock opened at $207.06 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $59.61 billion, a PE ratio of 39.74, a PEG ratio of 2.56 and a beta of 0.80. Ecolab Inc. has a 1 year low of $160.83 and a 1 year high of $209.87. The company has a fifty day simple moving average of $195.88 and a 200 day simple moving average of $195.22. The company has a current ratio of 1.24, a quick ratio of 0.84 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.69.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, January 15th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, December 17th were given a dividend of $0.47 per share. This represents a $1.88 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.91%. This is an increase from Ecolab’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.46. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, December 16th. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is presently 35.81%.

ECL has been the subject of several research reports. Boenning Scattergood lowered Ecolab from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, February 7th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted their price target on Ecolab from $186.00 to $192.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Friday, December 20th. Eleven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $199.27.

About Ecolab

Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene, and energy technologies and services worldwide. The company operates through Global Industrial, Global Institutional, Global Energy, and Other segments. The Global Industrial segment offers water treatment and process applications, and cleaning and sanitizing solutions primarily to industrial customers within the manufacturing, food and beverage processing, transportation, chemical, primary metals and mining, power generation, pulp and paper, pharmaceutical, and commercial laundry.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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