5-Star Stocks Poised to Pop: Coca-Cola

Based on the aggregated intelligence of 180,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, soft-drink behemoth Coca-Cola (NYS: KO) has earned a coveted five-star ranking.

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

Coca-Cola facts

Headquarters (Founded)Atlanta, Georgia (1886)
Market Cap$154.5 billion
IndustrySoft drinks
Trailing-12-Month Revenue$42.2 billion
ManagementChairman/CEO Muhtar Kent
CFO Gary Fayard
Return on Equity (Average, Past 3 Years)32.9%
Cash / Debt$14 billion / $26.2 billion
Dividend Yield2.8%
CompetitorsDr Pepper Snapple Group (NYS: DPS)
PepsiCo (NYS: PEP)

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

On CAPS, 95% of the 6,089 members who have rated Coca-Cola believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include headyinvestor and All-Star XMFSamStevens, who is ranked in the top 10% of our community.

Earlier this month, headyinvestor tapped Coca-Cola as a classic way to play defense:

Solid company -- financially & operationally. Shouldn't be hurt by down turn in economy. Investors/funds will flock to safe blue chips with high yields, KO will benefit nicely.

Currently, Coca-Cola even sports a cheapish P/E of 12.5. That represents a discount to other beverage plays like Dr Pepper (15.2), PepsiCo (15.8), and Hansen Natural (NAS: HANS) (29.2).

CAPS member XMFSamStevens elaborates on the bull case:

There are so many reasons Coke will outperform the market over the next 5, 10, 20 years, but here are just a couple:

1. Apply the "what would the world be like if this company disappeared test". Well, I can't really imagine myself ordering a pepsi everytime I went to a restaurant. ... Yup, the world would totally suck without coke.

2. Something I just ran across recently is this new coke fountain called Coca Cola Freestyle. Apparently this was launched back in 2009 in a limited capacity, but I'd never heard of it until just now. ... [I]t is the future of soda fountains and the coolest thing I've seen in a while. It lets you choose from all the coke products you can think of and that many more new ones that don't actually exist. Peach Sprite? Vanilla Root Beer? All the powerades, any type of lemonade you can name, the list goes on.

What do you think about Coca-Cola, 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 track Coca-Cola?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 Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, and Hansen, as well as creating a diagonal call position in PepsiCo. The Fool owns shares of Coca-Cola and PepsiCo. 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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