5-Star Stocks Poised to Pop: Flowers Foods

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Based on the aggregated intelligence of 180,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, bakery goods company Flowers Foods (NYS: FLO) has earned a coveted five-star ranking.

With that in mind, let's take a closer look at Flowers' business and see what CAPS investors are saying about the stock right now.

Flowers facts

Headquarters (Founded)Thomasville, Ga. (1934)
Market Cap$2.62 billion
IndustryProcessed and packaged goods
Trailing-12-Month Revenue$2.62 billion
Management

Chairman/CEO George Deese

CFO Steve Kinsey

Return on Equity (Average, Past 3 Years)18.2%
Cash/Debt$13.74 million / $320.67 million
Dividend Yield3.1%

Sources: Capital IQ (a division of Standard & Poor's) and Motley Fool CAPS.

On CAPS, 97% of the 348 members who have rated Flowers believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include robertshrestha and LegendPhoenix.

Earlier this week, robertshrestha listed several of Flowers' positives: "Decent growth, nice dividend yield, super-low beta reflecting stable business model, beaten down with the market. Lots to like."

Over the past five years, in fact, Flowers has grown its dividend at a brisk rate of 24% annually. That's much faster than food giants such as General Mills (NYS: GIS) (11%), Kraft (NYS: KFT) (5%), and Unilever (NYS: UL) (13%).

CAPS member LegendPhoenix highlights Flowers' recent earnings miss as an attractive buying opportunity:

[A]lthough it could have been better, it wasn't run-for-the-hills-bad. In this quarter they announced a 3-for-2 stock split and increased their annual dividend rate by 12% per share. Flowers Foods acquired Tasty Baking Company (along with Tastykake's debt) and they've had to layoff some employees due to redundant positions after the merger. Earnings per share were less than what analysts predicted due to "higher input costs across all segments," (ingredients, packaging, natural gas).

Many shareholders couldn't stand the heat so they fled the kitchen. In my opinion, the sell off was a bit overboard. Flowers' management is excellent and have shown that they can manage risks, reduce costs and make intelligent acquisitions. The company is a slow and steady grower that pays a dependable dividend.

What do you think about Flowers, or any other stock for that matter? If you want to retire rich, you need to put together the best portfolio you can. Owning exceptional stocks is a surefire way to secure your financial future, and on Motley Fool CAPS, thousands of investors are working every day to find them. CAPS is 100% free, so get started!

Interested in another easy way to trackFlowers?Add it to your watchlist.

At the time this article was published Fool contributor Brian Pacampara owns no position in any of the companies mentioned. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Unilever. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Fool's disclosure policy always gets a perfect score.

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