Based on the aggregated intelligence of 170,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, online retail giant (Nasdaq: AMZN) has received a distressing two-star ranking.

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

Amazon facts

Headquarters (Founded) Seattle (1994)
Market Cap $82.56 billion
Industry Internet retail
Trailing-12-Month Revenue $34.2 billion

Founder/Chairman/CEO Jeff Bezos

CFO Thomas Szkutak

Return on Equity (Average Past 3 Years) 25%
Cash/Debt $8.76 billion / $647 million
1-Year Return 55%

eBay (Nasdaq: EBAY) (Nasdaq: OSTK)

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

On CAPS, 22% of the 5,291 members who have rated Amazon believe the stock will underperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bears include All-Star LucaC, who is ranked in the top 2% of our community, and baselineace.

Late last month, LucaC wrote that Amazon bear case all boiled down to price: "Outstanding company, too high valuation. 2011 will be the year when the market won't tolerate its high [P/E] anymore."

In fact, Amazon currently sports a lofty P/E of 72.8, representing a substantial premium to online retail rivals eBay (23.6) and Overstock (29.9), as well as brick-and-mortar foes Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) (10.2), Target (NYSE: TGT) (14.3), and Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) (13.9).

CAPS member baselineace touched on Amazon's recent earnings miss:

You probably saw that tanked after reporting earnings. ... This came as no surprise to me. Margins have continued to compress as the company has opted to engage in price wars with Walmart, rather than focus on its other competitive advantages. ... Maybe [margins] aren't important to [CEO Jeff Bezos], but as evidenced by today's performance, they certainly do matter to the market.

What do you think about Amazon, or any other stock for that matter? If you want to retire rich, you need to protect your portfolio from any undue risk. Staying away from dangerous stocks is crucial to securing your financial future, and on Motley Fool CAPS, thousands of investors are working every day to flag them. CAPS is 100% free, so get started!

Fool contributor Brian Pacampara owns no position in any of the companies mentioned. Amazon and eBay are Motley Fool Stock Advisor picks. Wal-Mart is an Inside Value and Global Gains choice. Best Buy is an Inside Value and Stock Advisor selection. The Fool owns shares of Wal-Mart and Best Buy. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

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