Twenty-nine states have legalized medical marijuana while eight states and Washington, DC, have legalized recreational marijuana. This is a great time to invest in marijuana stocks in the USA.
Colorado is an example of why cannabis stocks are a great idea for investors looking to diversify their portfolios.
Sales of legal marijuana in Colorado’s famous ski resort, Aspen, reflect the public’s interest in consuming this historically prohibited substance, reflecting the promise that weed stocks have for enterprising investors. Just a generation ago, it would have been incomprehensible for investors to seek out marijuana stocks to invest in; however, we are now in a new economic era.
In fact, sales of marijuana have overtaken alcohol sales in the resort city which is encouraging for weed stocks investors. Currently, Aspen has six licensed cannabis vendors and five off-licences. This number gives us an idea of the viability of marijuana stocks.
Licensed vendors in Aspen garnered $11.3 million in income from cannabis just last year. This is especially impressive, when compared to the $10.5 million that was earned by off-licences. This could be the first time in American history that legal marijuana sales have exceeded sales of alcohol anywhere in the United States.
These statistics indicate the moment for individuals with a high tolerance for market fluctuation to explore marijuana stocks.
Aspen’s first cannabis shop opened in March 2014, about three months after Colorado passed legislation for taxing and regulating pot sales. By 2015, Aspen, which has a population of less than 7,000, had seven licensed distributors. This gives us an idea of the size of the pot market in Aspen, and an indication that weed stocks could be incredibly profitable if these numbers continue to grow.
According to the city’s finance department, Aspen’s marijuana sales grew 16% in 2017, up from its 2016 revenue of $9.7 million from legal marijuana. In fact, according to figures in an end-of-year sales tax report, the marijuana industry is the fastest growing of Aspen’s dozen retail sectors, which is an indication of the strength of the legal marijuana industry, marijuana stocks, as well as insight into the future of marijuana stocks in the USA.
Observers and marijuana stocks investors alike have speculated about why legal marijuana is so popular in Aspen.
Matt Kind, a Colorado businessman who hosts a podcast about the cannabis industry, has some theories.
He said, “I think [the legal marijuana sales are] meaningful for a couple of reasons. One in particular is when people are visiting Aspen and adjusting to a high altitude, some don’t drink for that first couple of days. And I think people are looking for something different from alcohol, which is essentially poison, and marijuana is botanical. I don’t say that with judgment, but you feel some lingering effects with alcohol.”
Matt Kind makes some good points. Marijuana offers benefits that alcohol cannot and this makes it a product individuals who are on vacation might want to consume to augment their good times. Of course, when there is market demand, the market will respond–and cannabis stocks are no different.
To the encouragement of marijuana stocks investors, another observer notes the different effects of alcohol versus cannabis on behavior.
Max Meredith, proprietor of one of Aspen’s marijuana shops, observed the growth in sales “shows adults are open to change.” Meredith said, “There are new substitutes, and they can be handled responsibly. And perhaps there are a few less late-night fights.” Meredith brings up an excellent point; few people who consume marijuana will react poorly, unlike those who consume alcohol. This could be another reason why individuals on vacation in Aspen are opting to consume pot, and another reason why investors should start looking for marijuana stocks to invest in.
In 2017, a study by Georgia State University found that alcohol sales fell 15% in states in which medical and/or recreational marijuana had been legalized. Additionally, counties in which pot could be obtained legally had 20% lower alcohol sales than counties in which marijuana had not been decriminalized, making investors look at cannabis stocks with even more interest. There is a push toward larger legalization in the United States and this means that marijuana stocks in the USA are a promising investment strategy.
(To learn more about pot legalization in the US, read Sessions’ Stand Against Pot Backfires, Raising Marijuana Stocks.)