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Marijuana Stock Report: Pot Stocks Climb As Boehner, McConnell Help Shift Political Winds

By Brandon A. Dorfman
Apr 13, 2018

The North American Marijuana Index rose on Thursday, as events in the political arena signaled a changing tide to pot stock investors. On Wednesday the marijuana industry gained a new spokesperson when former Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner joined the advisory board of Acreage Holdings, a cannabis firm active in 11 U.S. states. “Over the last 10 or 15 years, the American people’s attitudes have changed dramatically,” he said in an interview. “I find myself in that same position.”

Thursday saw political winds shift even further towards the cannabis industry as Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell introduced a bill to legalize industrial hemp at the federal level. The bill called the Industrial Hemp Act of 2018 would give farmers access to banking rights, flood insurance, and other notable necessities currently unattainable to the industry.

“As the tobacco industry has changed, some farmers in states like Kentucky have been searching for a new crop that can support their families and grow our agricultural economy,” said McConnell upon introducing the bill to the Senate. “And many believe they’ve found such a product: industrial hemp. But the federal government has stood in the way. Mr. President, it’s time to change that.”

Experts are calling it a watershed moment for cannabis legalization as it appears that marijuana has officially gone mainstream. The Index jumped 5.68 points in trading on Thursday, an increase of 2.48 percent, to close out the day at 234.32.

The United States Marijuana Index rose 2.75 points, or 3.57 percent, to end the day at 79.87, while the Canadian Marijuana Index jumped 10.24 points, or 1.71 percent to close out Thursday at 607.58.

Meanwhile, Wall Street saw positive gains on Thursday in anticipation of a strong earnings season and relaxed rhetoric from the White House over military strikes in Syria. As is typical of the new political reality, the announcement from President Trump came in the form of a tweet, which read that an attack on Syria could come, “very soon or not so soon at all.”

"We're hearing less talk of firing missiles and less talk of trade war," said Michael Antonelli, managing director of institutional sales trading at Robert W. Baird in an interview with Reuters. "Earnings are coming up and expectations are high."

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 293.6 points, an increase of 1.21 percent, to close out the day at 24,483.05, and the S&P 500 gained 21.8 points, or 0.83 percent, to end the day at 2,663.99. Similarly, the Nasdaq Composite jumped 71.22 points, a gain of 1.01 percent, to close out Thursday at 7,140.25.

The Horizons Marijuana Life Sciences ETF (HMMJ.TO) rose CAD$0.25 per share, an increase of 1.63 percent to end the day at CAD$15.59 per share, while the Evolve Marijuana ETF (SEED.TO) climbed CAD$0.31 per share, or 1.95 percent to finish the day at CAD$16.18 per share.

MedMen To Go Public In Canada

Cannabis’ self-described first unicorn MedMen Enterprises announced on Thursday the signing of a binding “Letter of Intent” which will see the marijuana chain effect a reverse takeover to become a public company in Canada. According to a statement, a reverse takeover involves a private company taking over a public company, in this case, OutdoorPartner Media Corporation. MedMen, who considers itself one of the most dominant chains in the marijuana industry, owns seven licensed stores in three states, including California.

“This is an important milestone in the evolution of MedMen and the increasingly global cannabis industry,” said Adam Bierman, MedMen’s co-founder and chief executive in a statement. “A major U.S. cannabis company is set to be publicly traded on a bona fide stock exchange. For nearly a decade we have been at the leading edge of the modern cannabis industry, putting ourselves in a dominant position in the most significant cannabis markets in the U.S.; California, Nevada and New York.”

Quick Hits

MedReleaf Corp. (TSX:LEAF) acquired 1 million square feet of existing greenhouse infrastructure in Ontario… Sunniva Inc. (CSE:SNN) (OTCQX:SNNVF) received all the necessary State of California temporary licenses for its greenhouse cultivation facilities in Cathedral City, California… Leafbuyer Technologies, Inc. (OTCQB:LBUY) partnered with DOPE media.

Martellus Bennett Claims “About 89 Percent“ of NFL Players Use Marijuana

Recently retired NFL football player Martellus Bennett claimed that around 89 percent of players use marijuana. “I want to say about 89%,” Bennett said on a Bleacher Report podcast hosted by Chris Simms and Adam Lefkoe, according to USA Today. Watch below as ESPN’s First Take debates his comments:

 

*Photo Credit: By Gage Skidmore (Flickr: John Boehner) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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