Why Orbital Sciences Is Ready for Liftoff

Based on the aggregated intelligence of 180,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, rocket and space system manufacturer Orbital Sciences (NYSE: ORB  ) has earned a respected four-star ranking.

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

Orbital facts

Headquarters (Founded)

Dulles, Va. (1982)

Market Cap

$771.7 million

Industry

Aerospace and defense

Trailing-12-Month Revenue

$1.4 billion

Management

Co-Founder/Chairman/CEO David Thompson
Vice Chairman/CFO Garrett Pierce

Return on Equity (Average, Past 3 Years)

9.6%

Cash/Debt

$227.5 million / $135.7 million

Competitors

Boeing (NYSE: BA  )
Lockheed Martin
(NYSE: LMT  )
Northrop Grumman
(NYSE: NOC  )

Sources: S&P Capital IQ and Motley Fool CAPS.

On CAPS, 96% of the 360 members who have rated Orbital believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward.

Just yesterday, one of those bulls, jimpiccard, touched on the tailwinds working in Orbital's favor: "Orbital specializes in small spacecraft and launchers -- the type of activity likely to see an increase from the [Department of Defense] as defense budgets become tighter. Also expect them to [perform] well on a major space station resupply NASA contract, which can lead to more of same after this one is completed."

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