Impax Asset Management Group plc grew its position in shares of Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL) by 4.1% in the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 1,508,549 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after purchasing an additional 59,119 shares during the quarter. Ecolab makes up about 3.6% of Impax Asset Management Group plc’s portfolio, making the stock its 2nd biggest holding. Impax Asset Management Group plc owned 0.52% of Ecolab worth $222,285,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Several other large investors have also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Tributary Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth $25,000. Athena Capital Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth $25,000. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund increased its holdings in Ecolab by 14,455.4% in the 4th quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 4,084,837 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $28,000 after acquiring an additional 4,056,773 shares in the last quarter. Ruggie Capital Group purchased a new stake in Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth $30,000. Finally, PRW Wealth Management LLC purchased a new stake in Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth $30,000. 75.68% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Ecolab stock opened at $175.15 on Tuesday. Ecolab Inc. has a 52-week low of $132.25 and a 52-week high of $182.19. The firm has a market cap of $50.22 billion, a PE ratio of 33.36, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.35 and a beta of 0.89. The company has a quick ratio of 0.85, a current ratio of 1.27 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.78.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, April 15th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, March 19th will be given a dividend of $0.46 per share. The ex-dividend date is Monday, March 18th. This represents a $1.84 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.05%. Ecolab’s payout ratio is 35.05%.
ECL has been the subject of several recent analyst reports. UBS Group lowered shares of Ecolab from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 21st. Citigroup lowered shares of Ecolab from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 21st. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Oppenheimer reaffirmed a “market perform” rating on shares of Ecolab in a report on Wednesday, November 21st. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Ecolab from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 21st. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $163.93.
In other news, CFO Daniel J. Schmechel sold 9,799 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $169.93, for a total transaction of $1,665,144.07. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 171,040 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $29,064,827.20. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director David Maclennan purchased 1,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, March 6th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $171.05 per share, for a total transaction of $171,050.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 2,519 shares in the company, valued at approximately $430,874.95. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 219,363 shares of company stock worth $37,289,913. Corporate insiders own 1.50% of the company’s stock.
Ecolab Company Profile
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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