Marijuana News Today: Pot Stocks Rally, Global Pot Trade Booms

Marijuana News Today
iStock.com/VladK213

Marijuana News Today

The marijuana news today has us heading into the weekend with smiles on our faces as the pot stock market rallied while the U.K. imported its first batch of medical marijuana, expanding the global weed trade.

The U.K. first legalized the prescription of medical marijuana in November, so this represents a milestone for the global marijuana trade. (Source: “The U.K. Just Got Its First Bulk Medical Cannabis Shipment,” Bloomberg, February 14, 2019.)

The pot shipment is coming from the Netherlands, so there’s not a whole lot of direct involvement by marijuana stocks we’re familiar with (yet).

Aurora Cannabis Inc (NYSE:ACB) has exported cannabis oil to the U.K., while Canopy Growth Corp (NYSE:CGC) has partnered with a British company, intent on bringing in cannabis products by early 2019.

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The opening of the market in Europe is without a doubt fantastic news and comes right on the heels of two other big international wins: the World Health Organization (WHO) recommending that the drug be rescheduled as less harmful, and the EU passing a resolution to encourage marijuana legalization across its member states.

Both moves are going to have long-lasting effects on the marijuana industry when they do come to fruition, which, in my mind, is all but a certainty. As is always the case in the pot industry, we have to play the waiting game.

What makes the European market even more exciting is that it has already outdone expectations.

Canaccord Genuity Group Inc (OTCMKTS:CCORF, TSE:CF), one of the top trackers of the marijuana industry, said that the cannabidiol (CBD) market exploded in Europe and did much better than anticipated.

The bank estimated that the CBD market in Europe was worth four to five times its previous estimate of €200.0 million that it made in August 2018. (Source: “European Cannabis Products Have Been More Popular Than Expected,” Bloomberg, January 30, 2019.)

What we have here, then, is a market brimming with potential that is growing in terms of acceptance with a trajectory that could see real, substantive reform within the next year or two.

In terms of the biggest moves on the horizon for pot stocks, there are few possibilities as juicy as marijuana reform hitting the European market and the U.S. market. That would essentially turbocharge pot stocks and send the industry on a run that may even rival the early days of Canadian pot startups.

That is to say, we could see hundreds, maybe even thousands, of points of gains in that time.

Of course, there is still a long way to go in both Europe and the U.S., but as the marijuana news today indicates, we are getting closer to a fully realized global marijuana trade every day.

Be on the lookout for individual countries in the EU to lead the way on marijuana legalization, while the U.S. will likely need a new president and Senate before we see major movement on pot reform.

CRON Stock

While the marijuana news today continues the trend of positive headlines that we’ve been seeing all week, for the first time in several days, the pot stock market is matching that positivity.

Marijuana stocks across the board are largely up today. We’re not seeing major movement, but a few healthy point gains here and there. It’s also a nice change of pace, considering much of this week saw the industry taking a bit of a hit.

We’ll start with the company that has stolen the show to start the year: Cronos Group Inc (NASDAQ:CRON).

Cronos stock jumped about two percent in early-morning trading today. Over the past five days, however, CRON stock has been very impressive, gaining over 10%.

Part of the reason behind the Cronos stock rush is, of course, its partnership with “Marlboro” cigarette maker Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO).

The move has helped spark renewed interest in the top marijuana stock, sending its price soaring to start 2019. In fact, it’s safe to say that CRON stock has been among the top performers so far this year, especially compared to companies of a similar size.

Moving forward, the next major event for Cronos stockis its quarterly report, set to be released in the coming weeks.

APHA Stock

Another marijuana stock up big today is Aphria Inc (NYSE:APHA).

Climbing about 4.5% in early-morning trading today, Aphria stock is one of the best performers to start the day.

But unlike the other two pot stocks we’ll be looking at in today’s piece, APHA stock hasn’t seen many gains over the past five days, only up about 1.5%.

Aphria stock is still under scrutiny following accusations that the company made bad faith acquisitions in Latin America to benefit specific shareholders and other people connected with the company, largely to the detriment of the company itself and the majority of shareholders.

A recent investigation by a special committee disputed some of these claims, but also found that conflict on the board presents an issue.

“Based on further information available to the special committee, it appears that certain of the non-independent directors of the company had conflicting interests in the acquisition that were not fully disclosed to the board,” said Aphria. (Source: “Aphria committee urges changes in governance amid LATAM review,” BNN Bloomberg, February 15, 2019.)

The takeaway for me here is that APHA stock is still very much in a transition period and will have to bear the shadow of this scandal—fairly or unfairly—for some time yet. Its erratic stock performance is a testament to the company’s unstable position.

OGRMF Stock

The final winner we’ll be taking a look at today is OrganiGram Holdings Inc (OTCMKTS:OGRMF, CVE:OGI).

OrganiGram stock gained two percent to start the day, but finds itself up big over the past five days with a near-14% boost.

OGRMF stock has been on a tear lately after its very well-received earnings report landed, showing huge gains in revenue and sales post-legalization in Canada.

Furthermore, the company has long been one of the more undervalued players in the industry, ripe with potential.

While OGRMF stock still has a ways to go before it has hit its ceiling, investors may want to take a deep look into what I consider to be one of the best marijuana penny stocks around.

CRON, APHA, and OGRMF Stock Performances

The performances of CRON stock (black line), APHA stock (blue line), and OGRMF stock (red line) over the past week are seen on the chart below.

Chart courtesy of StockCharts.com

Analyst Take

The marijuana news today has us celebrating on all fronts—political and financial.

Europe continues on its journey toward a more open market for legal marijuana, while the pot stock market rallied today, seeing gains across the board. A fine way to enter the weekend, I’d say.