Ecolab 1Q Net Down on Surging Raw Energy Costs

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By Rob Curran

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Ecolab Inc. said first-quarter earnings fell as higher prices and sales volumes of its water-treatment and sanitation products and services could not offset the effect of war-related inflation on costs.

The St. Paul, Minn., provider of water-treatment, hygiene and infection-prevention goods and services posted first-quarter net income of $171.9 million, or 60 cents a share, down $193.6 billion, or 67 cents a share, a year earlier. Excluding certain items, Ecolab posted adjusted earnings of 82 cents a share.

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First-quarter sales rose 16%, to $3.27 billion.

Raw material and freight costs rose 25% during the quarter, the company said, citing the onset of the war in Ukraine. That added roughly 55 cents a share of incremental costs, Ecolab estimated. The company boosted prices by an estimated 5% in the first quarter, up from 3% a year earlier.

In response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and related sanctions, Ecolab will limit Russian operations to those deemed essential to life, providing minimal support for its health-care, pharmaceutical, food-and-beverage and certain water businesses.

Shares fell slightly premarket.

Write to Rob Curran at [email protected]

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Credit: www.marketwatch.com /

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