Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL – Get Rating) announced a quarterly dividend on Thursday, May 5th, RTT News reports. Investors of record on Tuesday, June 21st will be given a dividend of 0.51 per share by the basic materials company on Friday, July 15th. This represents a $2.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.22%.
Ecolab has increased its dividend payment by an average of 4.9% annually over the last three years and has increased its dividend every year for the last 30 years. Ecolab has a dividend payout ratio of 33.4% meaning its dividend is sufficiently covered by earnings. Analysts expect Ecolab to earn $6.10 per share next year, which means the company should continue to be able to cover its $2.04 annual dividend with an expected future payout ratio of 33.4%.
Shares of ECL opened at $166.69 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.16, a quick ratio of 0.83 and a current ratio of 1.27. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $173.55 and a two-hundred day moving average of $201.11. The stock has a market cap of $47.72 billion, a P/E ratio of 43.41, a P/E/G ratio of 2.53 and a beta of 1.05. Ecolab has a one year low of $154.85 and a one year high of $238.93.
A number of equities analysts have weighed in on the stock. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Ecolab from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $179.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Tuesday, March 22nd. Barclays decreased their price objective on shares of Ecolab from $215.00 to $185.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, March 11th. Morgan Stanley dropped their target price on Ecolab from $240.00 to $200.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, February 17th. Mizuho reduced their price target on Ecolab from $210.00 to $198.00 in a research report on Wednesday, April 27th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada downgraded shares of Ecolab from an “outperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and reduced their price objective for the stock from $245.00 to $225.00 in a research report on Friday, January 21st. Ten equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the stock. According to MarketBeat, the company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $205.40.
In other news, Director Tracy B. Mckibben purchased 1,475 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, April 29th. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $170.00 per share, for a total transaction of $250,750.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now directly owns 6,746 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,146,820. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Director Jeffrey M. Ettinger acquired 5,000 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, February 17th. The stock was purchased at an average price of $179.39 per share, with a total value of $896,950.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 1.04% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of ECL. Barclays PLC boosted its stake in shares of Ecolab by 8.3% in the fourth quarter. Barclays PLC now owns 1,398,882 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $328,161,000 after buying an additional 107,780 shares in the last quarter. NewEdge Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in Ecolab by 40.3% in the fourth quarter. NewEdge Advisors LLC now owns 22,914 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $5,375,000 after acquiring an additional 6,577 shares during the period. Marshall Wace LLP purchased a new stake in shares of Ecolab during the 4th quarter worth $964,000. Toroso Investments LLC grew its stake in shares of Ecolab by 19.8% during the 4th quarter. Toroso Investments LLC now owns 20,467 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $4,801,000 after purchasing an additional 3,389 shares during the period. Finally, Sequoia Financial Advisors LLC purchased a new position in shares of Ecolab in the 4th quarter valued at about $361,000. 75.04% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
About Ecolab (Get Rating)
Ecolab Inc provides water, hygiene, and infection prevention solutions and services in the United States and internationally. The company operates through Global Industrial, Global Institutional & Specialty, and Global Healthcare & Life Sciences segments. The Global Industrial segment offers water treatment and process applications, and cleaning and sanitizing solutions to manufacturing, food and beverage processing, transportation, chemical, metals and mining, power generation, pulp and paper, commercial laundry, petroleum, refining, and petrochemical industries.
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