Oppenheimer Reaffirms Market Perform Rating for Ecolab (ECL)

Oppenheimer reissued their market perform rating on shares of Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday. Oppenheimer also issued estimates for Ecolab’s FY2018 earnings at $5.25 EPS, Q1 2019 earnings at $1.02 EPS, Q2 2019 earnings at $1.41 EPS, Q3 2019 earnings at $1.73 EPS, Q4 2019 earnings at $1.74 EPS, FY2019 earnings at $5.90 EPS and FY2020 earnings at $6.55 EPS.

A number of other equities analysts also recently weighed in on the company. Citigroup downgraded Ecolab from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a report on Wednesday. They noted that the move was a valuation call. UBS Group downgraded Ecolab from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a report on Wednesday. Zacks Investment Research reiterated a sell rating on shares of Ecolab in a report on Tuesday, November 13th. Deutsche Bank boosted their price target on Ecolab from $150.00 to $162.00 and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Monday, November 5th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets boosted their price target on Ecolab from $151.00 to $159.00 and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Thursday, November 1st. Ten investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $154.47.

Shares of ECL opened at $153.24 on Wednesday. The stock has a market capitalization of $44.78 billion, a PE ratio of 32.67, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.30 and a beta of 0.87. Ecolab has a fifty-two week low of $125.74 and a fifty-two week high of $160.66. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.79, a quick ratio of 0.90 and a current ratio of 1.34.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, October 30th. The basic materials company reported $1.53 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.53. The company had revenue of $3.75 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.74 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 19.13% and a net margin of 10.99%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 5.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.37 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts expect that Ecolab will post 5.27 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Ecolab news, EVP Darrell R. Brown sold 11,800 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $150.25, for a total transaction of $1,772,950.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 18,641 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,800,810.25. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Arthur J. Higgins sold 8,700 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $149.76, for a total value of $1,302,912.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 21,363 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,199,322.88. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 112,110 shares of company stock valued at $17,473,320. 1.50% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Ancora Advisors LLC bought a new stake in Ecolab during the third quarter worth approximately $107,000. Honkamp Krueger Financial Services Inc. bought a new stake in Ecolab during the third quarter worth approximately $110,000. Braun Bostich & Associates Inc. boosted its position in Ecolab by 487.7% during the second quarter. Braun Bostich & Associates Inc. now owns 858 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $120,000 after purchasing an additional 712 shares during the period. Squar Milner Financial Services LLC bought a new stake in Ecolab during the second quarter worth approximately $126,000. Finally, Mckinley Capital Management LLC Delaware bought a new stake in Ecolab during the third quarter worth approximately $147,000. 76.35% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Ecolab

Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene, and energy technologies and services for customers worldwide. The company operates through Global Industrial, Global Institutional, and Global Energy segments. The Global Industrial segment provides water treatment and process applications, and cleaning and sanitizing solutions primarily to large industrial customers within the manufacturing, food and beverage processing, chemical, mining and primary metals, power generation, pulp and paper, and commercial laundry industries.

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Analyst Recommendations for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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