Actions speak louder than words, as the old saying goes. So why does the media focus so much attention on what Wall Street says about companies, instead of what it does with them?

Luckily for Wall Street watchers, the Internet brings us MSN Money's list of which companies the institutions are buying. True, we should be as skeptical of Wall Street's actions as we are of its words. But when the 82,000-plus lay and professional investors on Motley Fool CAPS agree with Wall Street's opinions, it just might be time for some buying.

Here's the latest edition of Wall Street's Wish List, enhanced with CAPS investors' opinions of the companies involved.

Currently Fetching

CAPS Rating (out of 5)

Bright Horizons Family Solutions (Nasdaq: BFAM)

$44.27

***

Helicos BioSciences (Nasdaq: HLCS)

$16.00

**

Idenix Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: IDIX)

$4.71

**

GeoGlobal Resources

$4.04

*

Dot Hill Systems

$3.30

*

Companies are selected from the "Institutional Ownership Up Last Month" list published on MSN Money on the Saturday following close of trading last week. Current pricing also provided by MSN Money on the same date. CAPS ratings from Motley Fool CAPS.

Beggars can't be choosers
Main Street seems unimpressed with Wall Street's favorite stocks this week. It's panned the majority of the professionals' picks and has given grudging approval to just one. But to be fair, there's reason for the despair, and market optimists come few and far between right now. Perhaps this week we can lower our standards and give a three-star stock the benefit of the doubt?

OK, just this once
With the understanding that CAPS investors are not calling this one a "buy" yet, let's see what nice things investors have to say about Bright Horizons Family Solutions.

  • All-Star investor NechesInvst introduces us to the company in this pitch from December 2006: "A (if not THE) leading provider in childcare services. Works with companies to provide daycare and early education for the [employees'] children. [Recently] has begun to branch out and is providing services to help get children into the colleges of choice, by showing students how to fill out applications, etc. Also provides home care (to an extent) for the parents of the [employees]. Happy employees are better employees, and BFAM is showing the way. BFAM has little debt, and has had revenue and earnings growth of 16% and 29.9% respectively over the past 5 years." Intrigued by NechesInvst's "works with companies" observation, I took a look at the company's client-list. Turns out that Bright Horizons works with some of the biggest names in business, including Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT), Pfizer (NYSE: PFE), and JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM).
  • In a pitch from September, CAPS All-Star razormd liked Bright Horizons' "[s]teady earnings and revenues growth [and a] relatively good balance sheet."
  • One of the great things about CAPS is that with 82,000 investors and growing, we're bound to have a few contributors who can offer firsthand experience with the companies they're describing. So let's close today's pitch list with a few words from safetrip, who confided last March that "we send our daughter here and we are very happy. We've been to other day cares and pre schools but the quality of their facility [and] level of teachers are the best. The only thing is it's rather expensive for parents (full time day care is $20,000/year) but that insures high profit margin for investors." Good to know, and thanks for the firsthand 411, safetrip.

About the only thing I'd add to these comments is a caveat on valuation. This company carries a trailing price-to-earnings ratio of 27, which looks a bit pricey relative to analysts' projected 19% long-term profits growth. Worse, Bright Horizons' cash flow belies its GAAP profits. Whereas net income came to nearly $45 million over the past 12 months, free cash flow amounted to less than $29 million, for a price-to-free cash flow ratio of 41. So what looks to be an expensive stock on first examination gets even more so the closer you look. Word to the Foolish.

Time to chime in
Of course, the aim of this column isn't just to tell you what I think about Bright Horizons Family Solutions -- or even what other CAPS players are saying. We also want to hear your thoughts. Will this company grow into its price, or are its prospects -- how shall I put this? -- a bit less bright? Click on over to Motley Fool CAPS, and illuminate us.

Motley Fool CAPS: It's fun, it's free, and it just might make you famous.

Microsoft and Pfizer are recommendations of the Inside Value newsletter service. Pfizer is also a pick in Income Investor, along with JPMorgan Chase and J&J.

Fool contributor Rich Smith does not own shares of any company named above. You can find him on CAPS, publicly pontificating under the handle TMFDitty, where he's ranked No. 756 out of more than 82,000 rated players. The Fool has a disclosure policy.