Raymond James Trust N.A. boosted its position in Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 4.5% during the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 15,835 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after buying an additional 677 shares during the period. Raymond James Trust N.A.’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $3,165,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently bought and sold shares of ECL. Public Employees Retirement Association of Colorado increased its stake in Ecolab by 7.3% in the first quarter. Public Employees Retirement Association of Colorado now owns 49,063 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $7,645,000 after purchasing an additional 3,325 shares in the last quarter. Independent Family Office LLC bought a new stake in Ecolab in the first quarter valued at $339,000. Balyasny Asset Management LLC bought a new stake in Ecolab in the first quarter valued at $887,000. Two Sigma Advisers LP increased its stake in Ecolab by 32.1% in the first quarter. Two Sigma Advisers LP now owns 233,900 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $36,449,000 after purchasing an additional 56,900 shares in the last quarter. Finally, CIBC World Markets Inc. increased its stake in Ecolab by 17.1% in the first quarter. CIBC World Markets Inc. now owns 2,816 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $439,000 after purchasing an additional 411 shares in the last quarter. 74.16% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

In related news, EVP Jill S. Wyant sold 5,729 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $204.06, for a total transaction of $1,169,059.74. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 24,827 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,066,197.62. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Company insiders own 1.22% of the company’s stock.

Several equities research analysts have recently commented on ECL shares. Boenning Scattergood raised shares of Ecolab from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and boosted their target price for the stock from $197.84 to $230.00 in a research report on Tuesday, July 28th. TheStreet downgraded shares of Ecolab from an “a-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 28th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Ecolab from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $207.00 target price for the company in a research report on Wednesday, September 30th. Bank of America started coverage on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Wednesday, July 8th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $212.00 target price for the company. Finally, Oppenheimer reissued a “hold” rating on shares of Ecolab in a research report on Monday, August 3rd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have issued a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $190.31.

Shares of NYSE:ECL opened at $204.53 on Friday. The company’s fifty day moving average price is $201.21 and its 200-day moving average price is $196.40. The firm has a market capitalization of $58.37 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of -69.33, a PEG ratio of 4.96 and a beta of 0.93. Ecolab Inc. has a one year low of $124.60 and a one year high of $231.36. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.15, a current ratio of 1.60 and a quick ratio of 1.22.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 28th. The basic materials company reported $0.65 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.85 by ($0.20). The company had revenue of $2.69 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.58 billion. Ecolab had a positive return on equity of 18.80% and a negative net margin of 6.17%. Ecolab’s quarterly revenue was down 28.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.42 EPS. As a group, equities research analysts expect that Ecolab Inc. will post 4.08 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, October 15th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, September 15th were given a $0.47 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Monday, September 14th. This represents a $1.88 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.92%. Ecolab’s dividend payout ratio is 32.30%.

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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