Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL)‘s stock had its “hold” rating reiterated by research analysts at Credit Suisse Group in a research note issued on Wednesday.

ECL has been the subject of several other reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Ecolab from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reissued an “outperform” rating and issued a $141.00 price objective (up from $133.00) on shares of Ecolab in a research note on Friday, June 2nd. Deutsche Bank AG increased their price objective on Ecolab from $132.00 to $134.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 2nd. Morgan Stanley started coverage on Ecolab in a research note on Tuesday, August 15th. They issued an “equal weight” rating and a $140.00 price objective for the company. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded Ecolab from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note on Monday, August 14th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $133.57.

Ecolab (ECL) traded down 0.31% on Wednesday, reaching $131.12. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 716,147 shares. The company has a market cap of $37.94 billion, a P/E ratio of 29.98 and a beta of 0.99. Ecolab has a 52-week low of $110.65 and a 52-week high of $134.89. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $131.63 and its 200 day moving average price is $129.15.

Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, August 1st. The basic materials company reported $1.13 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.12 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $3.46 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.40 billion. Ecolab had a return on equity of 18.93% and a net margin of 9.66%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 4.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $1.08 earnings per share. Equities analysts anticipate that Ecolab will post $4.79 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other news, major shareholder William H. Gates III acquired 75,500 shares of Ecolab stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 3rd. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $132.57 per share, with a total value of $10,009,035.00. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Corporate insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its holdings in Ecolab by 1.9% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 20,842,027 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,766,780,000 after purchasing an additional 387,804 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in Ecolab by 2.0% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 15,325,707 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,034,488,000 after purchasing an additional 293,303 shares during the period. State Street Corp grew its holdings in Ecolab by 0.3% during the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 11,935,943 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,496,059,000 after purchasing an additional 31,277 shares during the period. Clearbridge Investments LLC grew its holdings in Ecolab by 6.8% during the first quarter. Clearbridge Investments LLC now owns 5,012,431 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $628,258,000 after purchasing an additional 320,253 shares during the period. Finally, C WorldWide Group Holding A S grew its holdings in Ecolab by 8.3% during the second quarter. C WorldWide Group Holding A S now owns 3,704,233 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $491,737,000 after purchasing an additional 285,258 shares during the period. 75.53% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Ecolab Company Profile

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.

Analyst Recommendations for Ecolab (NYSE:ECL)

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