The Most Powerful Cannabis Catalysts of 2019


Cannabis stocks were some of the hottest stocks of 2019.

More U.S. states gave the green light for medicinal and/or recreational use.  

In fact, the U.S. cannabis market could see sales reach $22.7 billion by 2023, including $16.8 billion in recreational sales, according to a the Brightfield Group. Political support is growing around legalization efforts, and medical programs are expanding around the country.

In fact, the latest state that could soon approve could very well be Illinois.

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzer reached an agreement to legalize it recreationally by 2020. 

Legislation would allow adults 21 and over to buy marijuana from licensed dispensaries. If the bill passes, Illinois would join 10 other states, including Michigan, in legalizing recreational marijuana. While the Illinois law would take effect Jan. 1, the first licenses for Illinois growers, processors and dispensaries wouldn't be issued until May and July 2020, according to ABC. 

We’re Likely to See More U.S. Legalization with Higher American Approval Ratings

According to three recent surveys, Americans are overwhelmingly in favor of legalization. According to The General Social Survey conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago, 61% of those surveyed support legalization.  

A Gallup survey found that up to 66% of Americans are in favor of legalization. In addition, a Pew survey found that 62% of Americans want to see cannabis legalization in the country, as compared to just 57% in 2015.

Demand for cannabis-based products is so strong, retailers are having a tough time keeping product on shelves for long.


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The U.S. Government is Pushing for Legalization

Congress just introduced a bill to make recreational marijuana use legal across the U.S. Known as The Marijuana Justice Act, it would legalize marijuana and wipe out any criminal possession charges from American records, according to Rolling Stone.  

Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden introduced S. 420, which seeks to legalize and regulate marijuana on a federal level. Otherwise known as the Marijuana Revenue and Regulation Act, it could de-schedule marijuana by removing it from the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), establish a federal excise tax on legal sales, and create a system of permits.

And, earlier this year, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) proposed H.R. 420, which seeks to treat marijuana like alcohol. In addition, lawmakers in California and Rhode Island have also introduced “420” bills, as well.

There’s even STATES, or Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States, it would amend the Controlled Substance act to limit federal interference in state matters.

In short, “It’s not a question of if we’re going to get a federal law,” says Sen. Ron Wyden. “It’s a question of when.”

In short, the cannabis story may remain one of the hottest stories of the year with plenty of catalysts for smart investors.

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