Marijuana News Today: Massachusetts Begins Selling Recreational Marijuana, Market Rallies

Marijuana News Today
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Marijuana News Today

In the marijuana news today, the first state east of the Mississippi River has officially begun selling legal recreational pot and the marijuana stock market has rallied somewhat over the past week.

First, the monumental news coming out of Massachusetts. It is the first eastern U.S. state to sell recreational pot, which may come as a surprise. (Source: “Recreational marijuana is now on sale in Massachusetts, and Pumpkin Spice Dust is on the menu,” CNN, November 20, 2018.)

Residents voted to legalize marijuana back in 2016, but, as is usually the case, it took a couple years before the changes could be implemented. This was due to the licensing and regulatory framework, not to mention that, due to the federal ban on marijuana in the U.S., all growing has to be done within state borders.

This means that every time a state opens for weed business, it has to grow its own local ecosystem before it can begin reaping the rewards of legal pot.

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Two to three years is the common period of time it takes states to implement legalization, and the same goes for Canada.

But the important takeaway is that marijuana legalization has now officially spread from sea to shining sea.

While Michigan voted to legalize recreational marijuana this last election cycle and Maine and Vermont have legalized marijuana, Massachusetts is the first to open up stores. This, of course, does not include Washington, D.C., which is not a state.

These developments show the U.S. map turning greener, with legal marijuana spreading across the country.

As I’ve said before, the faster that states can legalize and implement legalized pot, the faster they’ll reap the benefits: lower crime, higher tax revenue, and more jobs.

All three factors are bread and butter to politics, and the case for federally legal pot will continue to mount with each state that legalizes weed.

Massachusetts is a relatively large state, adding another roughly seven million people who can partake of marijuana legally.

The overall marijuana industry is unlikely to react too strongly to the opening of legal pot in Massachusetts, but this is all building toward the inevitable federal reform that we want to see in the country.

Nothing would have a more profound effect on marijuana than a federal legalization of pot in the U.S.

With the U.S. House of Representatives going to the Democrats this past election cycle, marijuana reform has a higher chance than ever of passing. While the Senate remains firmly Republican, several senators have come out in mild support of marijuana reform.

President Donald Trump has been erratic on the issue, but the last major statement from the White House concerning pot had Trump coming down on the side of marijuana legalization.

Which is to say that the marijuana industry may be in for its biggest green rush yet as marijuana inches closer to total legalization every day in the U.S.

CRON Stock

The marijuana news today also features a healthy rally on the stock market, with most cannabis stocks seeing modest gains to start the day.

Cronos Group Inc (NASDAQ:CRON) once again leads the pack with a healthy four-percent bump in early-morning trading. Over the past five days, CRON stock has leaped by about five percent.

This again continues the recent trend of the marijuana industry favoring the Nasdaq over other listings, with many of the pot stocks newly listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) performing relatively weakly in comparison.

CRON stock has always been one of the more volatile pot stocks around, a condition endemic to the two pot stocks on the Nasdaq.

But right now, we’re seeing the opposite effect with steady gains and mitigated losses on the Nasdaq since the beginning of this marijuana correction in October.

The explanation is, of course, that the Nasdaq has access to capital and investors that are known for riskier growth-oriented investment versus the NYSE. We’re seeing that take place as the legal marijuana industry continues to perform rather poorly over recent weeks.

CRON stock, as such, remains one of the better picks to see you through this current pullback.

CGC Stock

Despite still being among my favorite marijuana companies, Canopy Growth Corp (NYSE:CGC) has been unable to keep up with its competitors on the Nasdaq.

Its losses have been higher and its gains lower over the past month during the marijuana correction.

While this by no means dooms Canopy, this represents the first time in 2018 where CGC stock was lagging behind its competitors.

Bear in mind that CGC stock is still among the top performers year-to-date, and the company has the best fundamentals in the cannabis industry. Still, the Nasdaq marijuana stocks appear to be the better buy at the moment if you’re a day trader. For long-term investors, CGC stock still remains a great pick.

CGC stock climbed about four percent in early trading, but finds itself down three percent over the past five days.

While those numbers are lower than we’d like compared to earlier double-digit losses in past weeks, it’s a profound improvement.

TLRY Stock 

The other Nasdaq marijuana stock is, like Cronos, outperforming the competition. Tilray Inc (NASDAQ:TLRY) jumped about three percent in early morning trading. TLRY stock is up about five percent over the past five days.

Tilray and Cronos have shared nearly identical performances on the stock market as of late. This could represent a change in the Nasdaq, where TLRY stock often behaved very much independently compared to the rest of the marijuana stock market.

TLRY stock still gives me a little bit of pause when looking at the long-term growth prospects, considering how high it jumped in such a short period of time since its initial public offering.

Having said that, there is still a lot of potential for big spikes in gains for day traders to profit from, even if the long-term outlook for TLRY stock remains more muted compared to its smaller rivals.

CRON, CGC, and TLRY Stock Performances

The CRON stock (black line), CGC stock (blue line), and TLRY stock (red line) performances from the past week are seen on the chart below:

Chart courtesy of StockCharts.com

Analyst Take

The marijuana news today shows us again why pot stock investors ought to be juiced about the market, correction or no.

The future of the U.S. is to legalize pot. When that happens, expect to see the biggest rush in marijuana stocks yet.

As such, we still have a long way for these companies to climb and huge profits in store for those willing to wait out the down times.