Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) Given Consensus Recommendation of “Hold” by Brokerages

Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) has been assigned an average recommendation of “Hold” from the eighteen brokerages that are presently covering the company, MarketBeat Ratings reports. Eleven analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation and seven have assigned a buy recommendation to the company. The average 12-month price objective among brokers that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $183.42.

ECL has been the subject of a number of recent analyst reports. Nomura set a $42.00 price target on General Motors and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, May 2nd. Canaccord Genuity upped their price target on TELUS from C$51.00 to C$52.00 in a research note on Wednesday, May 1st. Zacks Investment Research cut Hersha Hospitality Trust from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, May 2nd. Argus upped their price target on Thermo Fisher Scientific from $285.00 to $310.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 1st. Finally, Bank of America reissued a “buy” rating and set a $105.00 target price (up from $100.00) on shares of Zendesk in a research note on Wednesday, May 1st.

In related news, EVP Timothy P. Mulhere sold 10,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, June 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $198.17, for a total transaction of $1,981,700.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 13,066 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,589,289.22. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director Victoria Reich sold 1,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, June 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $199.25, for a total value of $298,875.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 20,987 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,181,659.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 76,519 shares of company stock valued at $14,253,673. 1.52% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. BlackRock Inc. boosted its position in Ecolab by 2.6% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 17,078,831 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $3,015,097,000 after acquiring an additional 437,110 shares during the last quarter. Bank of America Corp DE boosted its position in Ecolab by 0.9% during the 4th quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 4,447,561 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $655,348,000 after acquiring an additional 39,640 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp boosted its position in Ecolab by 0.7% during the 1st quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 3,199,716 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $564,878,000 after acquiring an additional 22,023 shares during the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its position in Ecolab by 10.1% during the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 3,070,398 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $451,565,000 after acquiring an additional 281,532 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Pictet Asset Management Ltd. boosted its position in Ecolab by 1.1% during the 1st quarter. Pictet Asset Management Ltd. now owns 2,926,302 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $516,609,000 after acquiring an additional 31,033 shares during the last quarter. 75.21% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Ecolab stock traded up $0.24 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $199.80. 813,151 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,427,849. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.73, a current ratio of 1.14 and a quick ratio of 0.75. Ecolab has a fifty-two week low of $135.77 and a fifty-two week high of $200.93. The company has a market cap of $57.52 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 38.06, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.71 and a beta of 0.84. The business’s 50 day moving average price is $192.64.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, April 30th. The basic materials company reported $1.03 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.02 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $3.51 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.57 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 19.50% and a net margin of 10.06%. Ecolab’s revenue was up 1.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.91 EPS. On average, analysts forecast that Ecolab will post 5.9 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 15th. Investors of record on Tuesday, June 18th will be paid a dividend of $0.46 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, June 17th. This represents a $1.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.92%. Ecolab’s payout ratio is 35.05%.

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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Analyst Recommendations for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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