Based on the aggregated intelligence of 125,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, credit card issuer Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) has received a distressing two-star ranking.

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

Discover facts

Headquarters (founded)

Riverwoods, Illinois (1986)

Market Cap

$2.54 billion


Consumer Finance

Trailing 12 Month Revenue

$3.2 billion


CEO David Nelms (since 2004)
COO Roger Hochschild (since 2004)

Quarterly Revenue Growth (average, last eight quarters and most recent quarter)

(13.5%) and (59.2%)


American Express (NYSE:AXP)
Visa (NYSE:V)
MasterCard (NYSE:MA)

CAPS members bearish on DFS also bearish on

Capital One (NYSE:COF)
General Motors (NYSE:GM)

CAPS members bullish on DFS also bullish on

General Electric (NYSE:GE)

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

Over on CAPS, fully 42 of the 145 All-Star members who have rated Discover -- some 29% -- believe the stock will underperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bears include jester112358 and jstegma, both of whom are ranked in the top 5% of our community.

Last month, jester112358 kept the underperform case seductively simple: "How low can it go? Not much of a pitch is it? How about this: lots of upcoming credit card write downs."

In a pitch from one week later, jstegma conceives of a scenario that supports that bearishness:

Credit card defaults and charge-offs will continue to increase.

Keep in mind that if you get laid off and can't pay your mortgage, you can solve the problem by simply borrowing from your credit card. For example, if you have a $10k credit line, you can just balance transfer (in Discover's case, a slightly complex transaction) the maximum amount into your checking account. Credit card debt is unsecured, so if you don't pay it, you'll still get to keep your house. As more and more people lose their jobs, this strategy may become more common. I wouldn't want to be offering people unsecured loans at these fairly low rates right now with so much economic stress.

What do you think about Discover, or any other stock for that matter? Make your voice heard on Motley Fool CAPS today. More than 125,000 investors are waiting to hear what you have to say. CAPS is 100% free, so simply click here to get started.