California State Teachers Retirement System reduced its stake in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 8.3% during the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 448,113 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 40,541 shares during the period. California State Teachers Retirement System owned 0.16% of Ecolab worth $57,632,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently bought and sold shares of the business. TCI Wealth Advisors Inc. increased its stake in shares of Ecolab by 4.8% in the second quarter. TCI Wealth Advisors Inc. now owns 763 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $101,000 after purchasing an additional 35 shares during the period. Atlantic Trust LLC bought a new position in shares of Ecolab in the second quarter worth about $106,000. IHT Wealth Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Ecolab by 4.9% in the second quarter. IHT Wealth Management LLC now owns 811 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $116,000 after purchasing an additional 38 shares during the period. Atwood & Palmer Inc. increased its stake in shares of Ecolab by 2.9% in the second quarter. Atwood & Palmer Inc. now owns 892 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $118,000 after purchasing an additional 25 shares during the period. Finally, Sphera Funds Management LTD. bought a new position in shares of Ecolab in the second quarter worth about $133,000. Institutional investors own 76.98% of the company’s stock.
Shares of Ecolab Inc. (ECL) opened at $134.37 on Friday. Ecolab Inc. has a 1 year low of $116.92 and a 1 year high of $137.96. The firm has a market capitalization of $39,003.43, a PE ratio of 29.67, a P/E/G ratio of 2.25 and a beta of 1.05. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89, a quick ratio of 0.83 and a current ratio of 1.23.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, December 19th will be issued a dividend of $0.41 per share. This represents a $1.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.22%. This is an increase from Ecolab’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.37. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, December 18th. Ecolab’s payout ratio is presently 33.26%.
A number of research firms have recently commented on ECL. Credit Suisse Group reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Wednesday, September 6th. Robert W. Baird reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $140.00 price objective on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Thursday, October 12th. Royal Bank of Canada lifted their price objective on Ecolab from $137.00 to $143.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research note on Tuesday, November 7th. BidaskClub upgraded Ecolab from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 23rd. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Ecolab from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, November 2nd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have given a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $136.86.
In other Ecolab news, VP Larry L. Berger sold 5,197 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $137.37, for a total transaction of $713,911.89. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 33,110 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,548,320.70. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, EVP Michael A. Hickey sold 19,300 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, December 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $137.54, for a total value of $2,654,522.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 43,262 shares in the company, valued at $5,950,255.48. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 57,446 shares of company stock worth $7,886,307 over the last ninety days. Company insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.
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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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