Baldwin Brothers Inc. MA reduced its position in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 20.8% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund owned 1,716 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 450 shares during the period. Baldwin Brothers Inc. MA’s holdings in Ecolab were worth $228,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of ECL. FUKOKU MUTUAL LIFE INSURANCE Co raised its position in Ecolab by 60.0% in the first quarter. FUKOKU MUTUAL LIFE INSURANCE Co now owns 800 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $100,000 after buying an additional 300 shares in the last quarter. JNBA Financial Advisors raised its position in Ecolab by 2.5% in the first quarter. JNBA Financial Advisors now owns 871 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $109,000 after buying an additional 21 shares in the last quarter. Harfst & Associates Inc. bought a new position in Ecolab during the first quarter valued at about $117,000. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America raised its position in Ecolab by 0.7% in the first quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America now owns 1,012 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $127,000 after buying an additional 7 shares in the last quarter. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue bought a new position in Ecolab during the first quarter valued at about $134,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 75.66% of the company’s stock.

Ecolab Inc. (ECL) traded up 0.11% during trading on Friday, reaching $130.37. The company had a trading volume of 197,558 shares. The firm has a market capitalization of $37.73 billion, a PE ratio of 29.81 and a beta of 0.98. Ecolab Inc. has a 12-month low of $110.65 and a 12-month high of $134.89. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $132.25 and its 200 day moving average price is $127.73.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 1st. The basic materials company reported $1.13 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.12 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $3.46 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.40 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 18.93% and a net margin of 9.66%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 4.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $1.08 earnings per share. Analysts anticipate that Ecolab Inc. will post $4.80 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 16th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, September 19th will be paid a $0.37 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, September 18th. This represents a $1.48 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.14%. Ecolab’s payout ratio is 33.79%.

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Several research analysts have issued reports on the company. Deutsche Bank AG increased their price objective on Ecolab from $132.00 to $134.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 2nd. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $141.00 price objective (up from $133.00) on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Friday, June 2nd. Zacks Investment Research lowered Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Credit Suisse Group set a $128.00 target price on Ecolab and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 3rd. Finally, Canaccord Genuity raised their target price on Ecolab from $135.00 to $145.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 28th. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. Ecolab presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $133.43.

In related news, SVP Bruno Lavandier sold 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, June 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $133.52, for a total transaction of $133,520.00. Following the sale, the senior vice president now owns 8,922 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,191,265.44. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, EVP Christophe Beck sold 6,959 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, May 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $127.11, for a total value of $884,558.49. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 42,419 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,391,879.09. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 44,810 shares of company stock valued at $5,897,361. Insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

About Ecolab

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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