Based on the aggregated intelligence of 170,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis (NYSE: NVS) has earned a coveted five-star ranking.

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

Novartis facts

Headquarters (Founded)

Basel, Switzerland (1895)

Market Cap

$144.8 billion

Industry

Pharmaceuticals

Trailing-12-Month Revenue

$53.4 billion

Management

CEO Joseph Jimenez

CFO Jonathan Symonds

Return on Equity (Average, Past 3 Years)

17.1%

Cash/Debt

$8.76 billion / $31.11 billion

Dividend Yield

4.1%

Competitors

Merck (NYSE: MRK)

Pfizer (NYSE: PFE)

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

On CAPS, 97% of the 1,514 members who have rated Novartis believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include Odiseo and All-Star PsychoDr, who is ranked in the top 5% of our community.

Earlier this year , Odiseo touched on a few of Novartis' positives: "Good pipeline, good generic, stable Pharma. We will not stop buying medicine and NVS will not stop selling. At some point they will [come out] ahead."

Over the past five years, in fact, Novartis has grown its bottom line at a solid rate of 13% annually. That's faster than other drug behemoths like Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) (5.2%), Merck (6.1%), and Pfizer (0.5%).

CAPS All-Star PsychoDr expands on the Novartis outperform argument:

Novartis is a pharmaceutical company with a nice dividend, international reach, and generic drug presence. Generics are the wave of the future and any company that can provide lower price medication for an emerging international market community is a strong long term play. Health care will see significant growth going forward, I want in on all aspects of the industry.

What do you think about Novartis, 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. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Novartis, Johnson & Johnson, and Pfizer. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a diagonal call position in Johnson & Johnson, and The Motley Fool owns shares of it. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Fool's disclosure policy always gets a perfect score.