Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL – Get Rating) announced a quarterly dividend on Thursday, February 23rd, RTT News reports. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, March 21st will be paid a dividend of 0.53 per share by the basic materials company on Monday, April 17th. This represents a $2.12 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.37%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, March 20th.
Ecolab has raised its dividend by an average of 3.7% per year over the last three years and has increased its dividend annually for the last 31 consecutive years. Ecolab has a payout ratio of 36.9% meaning its dividend is sufficiently covered by earnings. Analysts expect Ecolab to earn $5.56 per share next year, which means the company should continue to be able to cover its $2.12 annual dividend with an expected future payout ratio of 38.1%.
Ecolab Price Performance
Shares of NYSE ECL opened at $154.58 on Friday. Ecolab has a fifty-two week low of $131.04 and a fifty-two week high of $185.50. The business has a 50 day moving average price of $155.78 and a two-hundred day moving average price of $151.92. The company has a quick ratio of 0.88, a current ratio of 1.30 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.11. The firm has a market cap of $43.97 billion, a PE ratio of 40.47, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.54 and a beta of 0.98.
Insider Transactions at Ecolab
In other news, EVP Larry L. Berger sold 4,404 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, March 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $162.95, for a total value of $717,631.80. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 12,442 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,027,423.90. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Company insiders own 1.04% of the company’s stock.
Institutional Trading of Ecolab
Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Geller Advisors LLC raised its stake in shares of Ecolab by 12.4% in the 1st quarter. Geller Advisors LLC now owns 1,345 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $238,000 after buying an additional 148 shares in the last quarter. Echo Street Capital Management LLC grew its holdings in shares of Ecolab by 7.9% in the 4th quarter. Echo Street Capital Management LLC now owns 1,510 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $220,000 after acquiring an additional 111 shares during the last quarter. IHT Wealth Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Ecolab in the 3rd quarter worth $215,000. Fulton Breakefield Broenniman LLC acquired a new position in shares of Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth $208,000. Finally, First Capital Advisors Group LLC. acquired a new position in shares of Ecolab in the 4th quarter worth $202,000. Institutional investors own 86.76% of the company’s stock.
Analyst Ratings Changes
A number of brokerages have weighed in on ECL. Stifel Nicolaus raised their price objective on Ecolab from $140.00 to $164.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 15th. Mizuho lifted their target price on Ecolab from $158.00 to $163.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Thursday, January 12th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised their price target on Ecolab from $175.00 to $180.00 in a report on Friday, December 9th. Wells Fargo & Company raised their price target on Ecolab from $168.00 to $175.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 15th. Finally, Barclays raised their price target on Ecolab from $160.00 to $165.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 15th. Eight analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the stock presently has a consensus rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average target price of $173.13.
Ecolab Company Profile
Ecolab, Inc engages in the provision of products and services in the field of water, hygiene, and energy. It operates through the following segments: Global Industrial, Global Institutional & Specialty, Global Energy & Life Science, and Other. The Global Industrial segment consists of the water, food and beverage, paper, and downstream operating segments.
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