Several investment firms have updated their stock ratings and price targets on shares of Ecolab (NYSE: ECL) in the last week:
- Ecolab had its price target raised by analysts at Piper Jaffray to $92.00. They wrote, “We maintain our Overweight rating on shares of ECL following the company’s in-line 4Q print of $0.89 in EPS on $3.05 billion in revenues. Beyond the sustained outperformance in energy services, we are particularly encouraged by margin improvement in Europe (+250 bps) in 4Q as well as the outlook (+100 bps again in FY13). We believe we are just starting to see the fruits of the international investments, especially as growth in emerging regions enables further operating leverage. The 1Q13 guidance of $0.56 – $0.60 is in-line when the effect of Champion (which is not in guidance but is in many street models) is factored in.”
- Ecolab had its price target raised by analysts at Barclays Capital from $80.00 to $81.00. They now have an “overweight” rating on the stock.
- Ecolab had its price target raised by analysts at Jefferies Group from $83.00 to $87.00. They now have a “buy” rating on the stock.
- Ecolab had its price target raised by analysts at Oppenheimer from $78.00 to $83.00. They now have an “outperform” rating on the stock.
- Ecolab had its “buy” rating reaffirmed by analysts at Deutsche Bank. They now have a $88.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $77.00. They wrote, “Ecolab shares rose 4% following an in-line Q4 earnings release as below consensus Q1 ’13 guidance was more than offset by strong Q4 results at Nalco (EBIT +47%) and Ecolab’s European cleaning business (EBIT +48%), a reasonable explanation for the Q1 shortfall (tough Energy comp, pension, sale of vehicle care) and reaffirmed ’13 EPS guidance of +13-17% ex Champion and +16-20% with Champion. With the European restructuring gaining traction (margins +110 bps in ’12; another 100bps in ‘13E), the $2.2B Champion acquisition (on track to close by quarter end) likely to accelerate upstream growth in Energy (shale, oil sands) and valuation a fair 21.5x ‘13E EPS, Buy.”
- Ecolab had its “neutral” rating reaffirmed by analysts at JPMorgan Chase. They now have a $74.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $71.00. They wrote, “Ecolab is restructuring: GAAP earnings were $2.36 in 2012 versus pro forma earnings of $2.98, which compares to GAAP and pro forma EPS of $2.17 and $2.23 for 2011. We trimmed our 2013 EPS forecast from $3.70 to $3.65 to reflect a one quarter delay in the closing of the Champion merger. Our EPS forecast for 2014 remains $4.50 and we have introduced a 2015 EPS projection of $5.15. Selling in excess of 20x EPS and at 11.7x EBITDA, ECL shares seem fairly valued.”
- Ecolab had its “neutral” rating reaffirmed by analysts at Zacks. They now have a $81.00 price target on the stock.
Shares of Ecolab opened at 77.28 on Wednesday. Ecolab has a 52 week low of $59.08 and a 52 week high of $78.00. The stock’s 50-day moving average is currently $74.32. The company has a market cap of $22.794 billion and a P/E ratio of 32.89.
Ecolab Inc. (Ecolab) develops and markets products and services for the hospitality, foodservice, healthcare and industrial markets.
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