Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD Trims Stake in Ecolab Inc. (ECL)

Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD reduced its stake in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 12.3% in the third quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 49,113 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 6,920 shares during the period. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $6,316,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other institutional investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Courier Capital LLC bought a new position in shares of Ecolab during the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $282,000. Alps Advisors Inc. grew its position in shares of Ecolab by 21.3% during the 2nd quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. now owns 2,134 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $283,000 after acquiring an additional 375 shares during the period. Stephens Inc. AR grew its position in shares of Ecolab by 4.7% during the 2nd quarter. Stephens Inc. AR now owns 18,332 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,434,000 after acquiring an additional 822 shares during the period. King Luther Capital Management Corp grew its position in shares of Ecolab by 0.5% during the 2nd quarter. King Luther Capital Management Corp now owns 817,279 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $108,494,000 after acquiring an additional 3,725 shares during the period. Finally, State Street Corp grew its position in shares of Ecolab by 0.3% during the 1st quarter. State Street Corp now owns 11,935,943 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,496,059,000 after acquiring an additional 31,277 shares during the period. 75.31% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

In other Ecolab news, insider Thomas W. Handley sold 7,397 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $130.63, for a total transaction of $966,270.11. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, major shareholder William H. Gates III acquired 75,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 3rd. The shares were purchased at an average price of $132.57 per share, for a total transaction of $10,009,035.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 1.49% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of analysts recently commented on ECL shares. Credit Suisse Group restated a “hold” rating on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Wednesday, September 6th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Royal Bank Of Canada upped their price target on shares of Ecolab from $134.00 to $137.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 12th. Canaccord Genuity restated a “buy” rating and set a $145.00 price target on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Monday, September 11th. Finally, Nomura restated a “hold” rating and set a $117.00 price target (down from $120.00) on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Tuesday, September 12th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Ecolab has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $134.93.

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Ecolab Inc. (ECL) opened at 130.66 on Wednesday. Ecolab Inc. has a 12-month low of $110.65 and a 12-month high of $134.89. The company has a market cap of $37.81 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.87 and a beta of 0.98. The company’s 50 day moving average is $131.45 and its 200 day moving average is $130.96.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last released its quarterly 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 for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.55 billion. Ecolab had a net margin of 9.66% and a return on equity of 18.93%. Ecolab’s revenue was up 5.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.28 earnings per share. Analysts forecast that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.73 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 16th. Investors of record on Tuesday, September 19th were paid a dividend of $0.37 per share. This represents a $1.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.13%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, September 18th. Ecolab’s payout ratio is 33.79%.

Ecolab 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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