The following commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet's guest contributor program, which is separate from the company's news coverage.By Tom Taulli, InvestorPlace Writer NEW YORK ( InvestorPlace) -- Coca-Cola's ( KO) cash machine continues apace. In its latest quarter reported earlier Tuesday, the company posted net income of $2.8 billion, or $1.20 per share. This was up from last year's $2.37 billion, or $1.02 per share. For the past couple of years, Coca-Cola's stock price also has been a winner. In 2009, the return was 29.3%, and a year later, it was 18.5%. However, as for 2011, things have slowed down, with the shares gaining only 3.7%. Perhaps the valuation is a bit too high? Or can Coca-Cola bring another double-digit year for shareholders? Here's a look at the pros and cons: Also See: 9 Great Investment Ideas for a Crazy Market.
The company was able to increase overall prices about 1% to 2% in the quarter. And it hopes to increase this to 3% to 4% in the second half of the year. However, there is certainly a risk that consumers will reduce their purchases. Also See: 4 Disturbing Charts to Watch Consumer changes. There has been a general move away from carbonated beverages in North America because of health concerns. The trend has been gradual, but it is an issue. At the same time, there is a risk of the same problems in other countries.