2018 has been considered to be one of the defining years for the world of cannabis, but as a large amount of instability hit the industry and speculative trading took over, many investors saw marijuana as too risky. As we move through the end of this year and into the next, how will the marijuana market continue to shift and adapt to the future of trading?
The past year has seen several states adopt new laws for cannabis use such as Michigan, Vermont, Utah and Missouri. These states are only the most recent to legalize the use of cannabis, but it appears that this has created a domino effect for the U.S. and many areas around the world.
Starting with the legalization of recreational cannabis throughout Canada earlier this year, the success of this new market has helped to illustrate just how beneficial a legal marijuana market can be. One executive in the cannabis space, David Goldstein, stated recently that “what I would like to see in 2019 is de-schedulization. From a Schedule One drug that says marijuana has zero health benefits to either a Schedule Two or Schedule Three.”
The scheduling of cannabis from a federal standpoint in the U.S. has been one of the most difficult challenges to overcome for those looking to participate in the industry. The current laws on a nationwide level put cannabis legality on the same level as heroin and other extremely dangerous drugs. Of course, this does not make too much sense but the history of marijuana law in this nation is founded on false propaganda. If cannabis is able to be rescheduled into the near future, the industry will be able to flourish at a much higher rate than it currently is.
The state of legal marijuana in the U.S. puts businesses at an extreme disadvantage as far as practices are concerned. Many companies are only able to operate using cash as they are not able to have federally insured bank accounts. This means paying employees in cash and overall having a dangerous situation for the entirety of the business. Goldstein further stated that “when we look at scales up to 2025, expectations are that the U.S. market will be with about $100 billion worth of cannabis sales. That’s slightly below beer, and just north of coffee.”
While these numbers may sound extremely high, at the current rate cannabis is selling in the U.S., it is entirely plausible that it would reach these numbers. States have continued to benefit from the massive taxes that they are able to reap in which is one of the biggest incentives for legalizing the market. In addition to this, studies in recent months have shown that acceptance and approval for cannabis by the public in the U.S. is extremely high. All we need now is legislation to begin working to follow what the public would like to see. Until that time, we are able to look forward to the cannabis market on an individual state level while legislation waits to be passed.