Cannabis Legalization Sweeps the West Coast
November 9th, 2016
Policy, Top News
More than a quarter of the U.S. population will now live in a state where medical or recreational cannabis is legal following the 2016 elections.
Voters in California, Nevada, and Massachusetts endorsed the recreational use of marijuana in state-wide polls, while Arizona rejected the measure and Maine’s votes are still being counted. Meanwhile, voters in Florida and North Dakota legalized the drug for medical use and Montana revamped its laws to remove key barriers for theCFN-FEatur industry.
These states join 25 other states that have legalized medical marijuana and four states that have legalized recreational marijuana. In total, the percentage of Americans living in states where marijuana has been legalized rose above 20% from just 5% before the election.
Figure 1 – Americans’ View on Legalizing Cannabis – Source: Gallup.com
The significant increase in cannabis approval could spur the federal government into taking action. According to an October Gallup poll, nationwide support for legalization stood at 60%, which is the highest level in the 47 years the organization has tracked the issue.
Supporters have portrayed legalization as a social justice and criminal justice issue more than a basic human right, saying the measure helps reduce discrimination against minorities. In Colorado, studies have shown that both crime rates related to cannabis and the percentage of teen users has fallen. Other benefits have included reduced opioid usage and addiction.
The legalization of marijuana is also expected to create an enormous new industry within the United States. According to New Frontier and ArcView, the legal cannabis market size is expected to grow 26% to $7.1 billion in 2016 driven by newly legal states. States like Colorado are expected to generate hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue, while California expects to generate more than a billion dollars from its legalization measures.
Figure 2 – Marijuana Stock Performance – Source: MarijuanaIndex.com
Investors anticipating the successful legalization of cannabis have pushed shares of cannabis-focused companies significantly higher in recent months. The Marijuana Index has increased from around $60 to more than $160 since August as polling has shown robust support, although some of these gains come from Canada where recreational cannabis has already been legalized and programs are in the process of implementation.
Investors interested in the cannabis industry may want to consider building a diversified portfolio given the micro-cap nature of the market.
This article was published by CFN Enterprises Inc. (OTCQB: CNFN), owner and operator of CFN Media, the industry’s leading agency and digital financial media network dedicated to the burgeoning CBD and legal cannabis industries. Call +1 (833) 420-CNFN for more information.
About CFN Media Group
CFN Enterprises Inc. (OTCQB: CNFN) owns and operates CFN Media Group, the premier agency and financial media network reaching executives, entrepreneurs and consumers worldwide. Through its proprietary content creation, video library, and distribution via www.CannabisFN.com, CFN has built an extensive database of cannabis interest, assisting many of the world’s largest cannabis firms and CBD brands to build awareness and thrive. For more information, please visit www.cfnenterprisesinc.com.
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