Based on the aggregated intelligence of 170,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, medical device maker Becton, Dickinson and Co. (NYSE: BDX) has earned a coveted five-star ranking.

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

Becton Dickinson facts

   
Headquarters (Founded) Franklin Lakes, N.J. (1897)
Market Cap $18.4 billion
Industry Health care equipment
Trailing-12-Month Revenue $7.35 billion
Management

Chairman/CEO Edward Ludwig

CFO David Elkins

Return on Equity (Average, Past 3 Years) 16.2%
Cash/Debt $1.75 billion / $1.7 billion
Dividend Yield 2%
Competitors

Abbott Labs (NYSE: ABT)

Baxter International (NYSE: BAX)

Covidien (NYSE: COV)

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

On CAPS, 98% of the 1,087 members who have rated Becton Dickinson believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include All-Star ikkyu2, who is ranked in the top 5% of our community, and MarginofSafetyIn.

Late last year, ikkyu2 tapped Becton as a healthy pick: "Health care staples don't go out of style and the company is quietly taking share. Check out the fundamentals, esp. margin -- this is the kind of company you want to own all the time."

In fact, Becton Dickinson's three-year average operating margin (22.9%) edges out rivals Abbott's (20%), Baxter's (22.5%), and Covidien's (21.6%), and easily tops that of other medical device plays like Boston Scientific (NYSE: BSX) (15.2%) and Thermo Fisher Scientific (NYSE: TMO) (11.9%).

CAPS member MarginofSafetyIn elaborates on the bull case:

[Becton Dickinson] seems to be a very robust business, with high free cash flow generation, high ROE and ROIC. While I would have preferred to see ROA consistently above 9-10%, the other metrics give me great confidence in the company's results. Growth has been extremely consistent at around 7% and seems to be going back to similar levels after a flat 2009. ... It also has promising intrinsic stock returns and a strong balance sheet.

What do you think about Becton Dickinson, 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. Becton, Covidien, and Thermo Fisher are all Motley Fool Inside Value picks. Motley Fool Alpha owns shares of Abbott. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

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