The North American Marijuana Index saw strong gains to start the week, even as investors braced themselves for the Fed’s two-day rate setting meeting come Tuesday. Analysts predict somewhere between a 25 basis and a 50 basis point hike to the Fed funds rate target, bad news for the market even in a good economy. Cannabis stocks are prepared to weather the storm, especially as news that California is accepting applications for cannabis licenses hit last week. The Index closed at 179.69, up 5.65 points for a 3.25 percent gain.
United States Index
Monday was another good day for cannabis stocks as the United States Marijuana Index gained on the back of a healthy day for the markets in general. Both the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 rose as investors prepared for Tuesday’s inevitable point hike. Positive news for the industry came out of California last week, where marijuana is set to legalize on January 1. The Bureau of Cannabis Control began accepting applications for cannabis licenses on December 8. Closing at 64.56, the Index rose 1.38 points for a gain of 2.18 percent.
Markets closed mixed across the border, with the S&P/TSX up .05 percent and the S&P/TSX Venture down .20 percent. Still, it was an overall good day for the Canadian Marijuana Index, and the markets as a whole, as stocks rallied after a slow start Monday morning. The big news out of Canada is the never-ending saga between Aurora Cannabis (OTC:ACBFF) and CanniMed Therapeutics (TSX:CMED), as Aurora rebuffed CanniMed’s effort to involve the government in the two companies’ spat. Canada’s Index closed at 466.27 on Monday, up 17.94 for a gain of 4.00 percent.
Winners and Losers
After last week’s announcement of the hiring of Juan Sanchez Tamburrino, Ph.D. to be the company’s new Vice President of Research and Development, 22nd Century Group, Inc. (NYSE:XXII) shares gained 6.42 percent. The company closed at $2.82 per share on higher than the average trading volume on Monday. Cannabics Pharmaceuticals Inc. (OTC:CNBX) saw their shares rise 7.98 percent on lower than average volume on Monday. Trading closed at $1.069 per share. Finally, CLS Holdings USA, Inc. (OTC:CLSH) opened steady on Monday, with shares rising 7.41 percent on higher than average trading volume. Shares ended the trading day at $0.58 per unit.
With no significant news coming from the company for awhile, Acology Inc. (OTC:ACOL) shares fell 5.23 on Monday. The company closed the trading day $0.010899 per share on lower than average trading volume. Cara Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:CARA) had a bad day on the market on Monday, losing 7.39 percent on higher than average trading volume. The company closed the day at $12.54 per share. Corbus Pharmaceuticals Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:CRBP) also had a bad day, dropping 6.62 percent on higher than average trading volume to close the day at $7.05 per share.
Stocks To Watch (And Watch Out For)
Canopy Growth Corp. (TSX:WEED) made a significant investment last week in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador. The company was up today, with shares gaining 2.52 percent on lower than average trading volume. Gridiron Bionutrients (MYYZ - still trading under their former name My Cloudz, Inc.) launched a major partnership with Pro Football Legends, the NFL Alumni Group. The stock was down 18.55 percent today on higher than average trading volume.
For more on The Marijuana Index, including methodology, go to marijuanaindex.com.