Why Whole Foods Looks Tasty Long Term

Based on the aggregated intelligence of 180,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, natural and organic food retailer Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ: WFM  ) has earned a respected four-star ranking.

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

Whole Foods facts

 

 

Headquarters (founded)

Austin, Texas (1978)

Market Cap

$17.0 billion

Industry

Food retail

Trailing-12-Month Revenue

$11.7 billion

Management

Co-Founder/Co-CEO John Mackey

Co-CEO Walter Robb

Return on Equity (average, past 3 years)

12.5%

Cash/Debt

$1.2 billion / $24.1 million

Dividend Yield

0.9%

Competitors

Kroger (NYSE: KR  )

Safeway (NYSE: SWY  )

Trader Joe's

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

On CAPS, 93% of the 4,914 members who have rated Whole Foods believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward.

Earlier this week, one of those Fools, LouPinella, succinctly summed up the Whole Foods bull case for our community:

The regular dividend seems puny, but after growing 40% last year and another 43% this year, it's headed in the right direction fast. Share buybacks, too, almost a half a billion dollars worth in the works. Growth? Yup; 335 stores in existence, with the old stores generating comps in the 6-8% range and the new ones 11-16%. Oh, and they're working up to a thousand stores. Also growing in Canada and the UK. Is it a little pricey? Sure. It's not the cheapest stock you'll ever buy, but these are some of the reasons for that. Of course, margins will never be as good as some other sectors, and you could argue that the big returns are past them.

You may not shop there -- you may not even have one within driving distance -- but there plenty of people who do, and not only are they getting high-quality goods, but odds are (warning: anecdotal evidence) they have secure incomes and can afford the good stuff.

Of course, this short pitch doesn't even come close to telling the entire story for Whole Foods. You're in luck, though: The Fool's brand-new premium report on Whole Foods tells all sides of the story for one of the most compelling retailers in the world. You can grab your copy now, which comes with free updates for 12 months, by just clicking here.

Want to see how well (or not so well) the stocks in this series are performing? Follow the TrackPoisedTo CAPS account.


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