Based on the aggregated intelligence of 170,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, ceramic products specialist Ceradyne (Nasdaq: CRDN) has earned a coveted five-star ranking.

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

Ceradyne facts

Headquarters (Founded) Costa Mesa, Calif. (1967)
Market Cap $1.02 billion
Industry Aerospace and defense
Trailing-12-Month Revenue $402.94 million

Chairman/CEO Joel Moskowitz

CFO Jerrold Pellizzon

Return on Equity (Average, Past 3 Years) 7.7%
Cash/Debt $246.3 million / $85.6 million
Competitors General Electric (NYSE: GE)

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

On CAPS, 97% of the 1,295 members who have rated Ceradyne believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include RutledgeAvenue and DoctorCJ.

Two months ago, RutledgeAvenue tapped Ceradyne as an increasingly popular way to play defense: "Strong management leadership through recession, transition/acquisition years, and now this stock is being rediscovered by fund managers returning from recessionary markets and financial debacles."

Over the next five years, Ceradyne is even expected to grow its bottom line at a solid rate of 14% annually. That's faster than listed foe General Electric (12.8%), as well as other aerospace and defense plays like Boeing (NYSE: BA) (9.5%) and Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) (8.9%).

CAPS member DoctorCJ expands on the outperform argument:

[Ceradyne] is the industry leader in high tech ceramics with no competition within sight. The new materials they have can do things that add value to the energy industry that 5 years ago were considered economically impractical to pursue. As oil, gas, wind, solar, and nuclear energy becomes more in demand and sources open to the West diminish, Ceradyne will be there to enable others. Ceradyne's technology will be the tiny enabler needed to open great resources and will be able to not only increase revenues, but capture higher margins on that revenue.

What do you think about Ceradyne, 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. The Fool owns shares of Lockheed Martin. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

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