4-Star Stocks Poised to Pop: Coca-Cola

Based on the aggregated intelligence of 165,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, soft-drink behemoth Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO  ) has earned a respected four-star ranking.

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

Coca-Cola facts

Headquarters (founded)

Atlanta (1886)

Market Cap

$132.4 billion

Industry

Soft drinks

Trailing-12-Month Revenue

$31.75 billion

Management

CEO Muhtar Kent (since 2008)

CFO Gary Fayard (since 1999)

Return on Equity (average, past 3 years)

28.4%

Cash/Debt

$10.2 billion

Dividend Yield

3.1%

Competitors

PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP  )

Dr Pepper Snapple Group (NYSE: DPS  )

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

On CAPS, 95% of the 5,551 members who have rated Coca-Cola believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include All-Star IsleGirl2010, who is ranked in the top 2% of our community, and AlphaCenturion.

Two months ago, IsleGirl2010 tapped the stock as a refreshingly safe selection: 

Coke will always be around. It is just a brilliant marketing company. It may not have crazy growth but it's a keeper unless the world decides to stop drinking soda.

While Coca-Cola represents the earth's most simple and stable business, it is actually a time of great change for the beverage behemoth. After main rival PepsiCo took control of its two anchor bottlers in 2009, Coca-Cola responded by purchasing the North American operations of Coca-Cola Enterprises (NYSE: CCE  ) . The acquisition even prompted Coca-Cola to pay Dr Pepper $715 million for the rights to distribute some of its brands after the deal closes. With a closer connection to its retailers as a result of the move, Coca-Cola might be more flexible today than ever before.

CAPS member AlphaCenturion sums up the bulls case:

One of the few times I will upthumb a stock based on the story rather than technicals or fundamentals. If the economy doesn't improve soon I think you'll see a "flight to quality" in equities and high-yielding blue chips are a great way to protect your money. The premium I don't think is entirely unjustified either since we're still talking about Coca-Cola after all. They're a global brand likely to be around for many, many years and they will almost certainly benefit from the growing demand in emerging markets.

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!

Fool contributor Brian Pacampara owns no position in any of the companies mentioned. Coca-Cola is a selection of both Motley Fool Inside Value and Income Investor. PepsiCo is also an Income Investor choice, and Motley Fool Options has recommended a diagonal call position on it. The Fool owns shares of Coca-Cola. True to its name, The Motley Fool is made up of a motley assortment of writers and analysts, each with a unique perspective; sometimes we agree, sometimes we disagree, but we all believe in the power of learning from each other through our Foolish community. The Fool's disclosure policy always gets a perfect score.


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