As Americans get more accustomed to the idea of legalized marijuana, they are also getting more comfortable with the idea of investing in marijuana businesses. A new Marist poll conducted with Yahoo News found that nearly three in 10 people would like to put money in a cannabis business.
If marijuana was legalized, 29% say they would be interested in investing in a marijuana business. Of that group, 12% say that it's very likely they would put their money where their mouth is and 17% would back a marijuana venture.
The market has gotten so big, so fast that it has generated enormous interest and curiosity from investors. Cannabis research and investment firm Arcview Research released a report earlier this year saying regulated marijuana sales in North America totalled $6.7 billion in 2016, a 30 percent increase from 2015. They also projected that sales would grow at a compound annual growth rate of 25 percent, from $6.9 billion in 2016 to an estimated $21.6 billion by 2021. “You will not find another multi-billion-dollar market growing at 25 percent anywhere in the world that is not already filled with multi-national companies and institutional investors. That’s part of what makes the cannabis industry such a unique opportunity for investors and entrepreneurs,” said Troy Dayton, CEO of Arcview Market Research.
Even though major banks at this time aren't willing to work with marijuana companies, over half or 52% of Americans say that they would approve of their bank making an investment in a marijuana farm or business. A generation gap does exist in this opinion with millennials and Gen-X is more open to the idea at 66% and 61% respectively than older investors. Baby Boomers and those from the Greatest generation disapprove of the idea. 51% of Boomers are against it and a whopping 76% from the Greatest generation just say no.
When it comes to retirement money being invested in a marijuana business, the opinion is split. 51% approve of the idea, while 45% do not want their retirement money going into cannabis. The generation split resurfaces again when it comes to retirement money. The younger crowd is okay with such an investment, while the older crowd is not comfortable with it and the percentages are roughly the same as it was for bank investing.
People who already consume cannabis are also more open to the idea of investing in the industry. 82% in this group say they approve of retirement fund investing in marijuana and 86% approve of their bank investing in a marijuana business.
Currently, cannabis investors can invest in a variety of publicly traded stocks that are associated with the sector. In addition to that, there is the Horizons Medical Marijuana Life Sciences ETF. There are also investment firms that specialize in putting money with emerging cannabis companies. They include Poseidon Asset Management, MJIC Investment Company, Privateer Holdings and Viridian Capital to name a few. If you are in search of research in order to better prepare yourself for investing, Greenwave Advisors is a great source.
Of course, cannabis investing is subject to a great deal of risk. There is no assurance that Attorney General Jeff Sessions will allow the cannabis industry to continue without any challenges from his department. At the end of the day, marijuana is still a federally illegal substance.