Experts report that 2018 was a banner year for the marijuana industry. More states have passed laws for medical marijuana programs, reaching a total of 33, as have the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico. Other milestones include California’s accession to Colorado to allow recreational weeds and approval of the first marijuana drug, which treats a form of childhood epilepsy. All of this has resulted in a multi-billion dollar industry with a booming job market and a projected value of $ 146.4 billion by 2025.
Investors large and small everywhere are wondering if the medical marijuana industry is a good place to invest their money. As the future looks bright and Americans embrace marijuana use more than ever before, you want to make sure you know the facts before you make your financial decisions. Here’s a look at the pros and cons of investing in marijuana.
A look at the benefits
Let’s start with the positives. If you don’t know the history of legalization and why this drug is growing in popularity so quickly, here are some details you need to know.
Medical need for marijuana
The importance of medical marijuana in America can be illustrated by stories like Charlotte figi – the little girl who caused the cannabis laws to change because of severe epileptic seizures – or the dying patients who can enjoy their last days pain-free. According to procon.org, more than 3.5 million people in the United States hold medical marijuana identification cards, and that number is only expected to increase. As more people have the opportunity to see if medical marijuana can help their debilitating conditions, more stories of symptom-free lives could be shared.
To fully understand the impact these programs can and will have on millions of people across the country, you need to understand how medical marijuana works and what it helps. Your body produces chemicals similar to those in marijuana that provide relief from inflammation and pain. So when you smoke, vape, or eat marijuana products, it further stimulates your body’s natural chemicals to function better, relieving painful and long-term symptoms.
Pain is the number one reason people seek marijuana prescriptions, but you might be surprised to find that it’s not the only common condition relieved by medical marijuana. Many people struggle with gastroesophageal reflux disease, commonly known as GERD or heartburn. This painful burning of the lining of your esophagus can be minimized by cannabis because it slows down the secretions of stomach acids, making it an effective remedy.
Other common uses of medical marijuana include:
- Nausea caused by chemotherapy regimens
- Seizure disorders
- Eating disorders like anorexia
- Stress, anxiety and sleep
- Crohn’s disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Muscle spasms
- Weight loss and poor appetite caused by chronic illnesses such as AIDS
If you were to add up the number of people in America with each of these conditions, the reach of medical marijuana could be astronomical. As an investor, this is exactly the type of industry you want to find for your hard earned money.
This could be a solution to the opioid epidemic
The opioid epidemic began in the late 1990s when the pharmaceutical industry assured suppliers that the risk of opioid addiction was minimal. Doctors were prescribing the drugs at high rates, resulting in widespread abuse. Once the long-term effects were clearly identified, the epidemic swept through our nation.
In 2017, more than 130 people died of opioid-related overdoses every day and more than 11.4 million people abused prescription forms of opioids. Once a person is addicted, treat opioid addiction is difficult and places significant financial pressure on the health sector. The number of deaths as well as the social impact of the epidemic have prompted the medical community and policy makers to seek new ways to treat chronic pain.
Medical marijuana is being hailed as a solution to the opioid epidemic. Some experts believe that the long-term effects of marijuana are minimal and that the risks of addiction are almost non-existent. However, the National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that 30 percent of marijuana users may develop some degree of marijuana use disorder. Since some marijuana products only contain the non-psychoactive chemical, some users might get the benefits without the psychoactive effects. Although the research is limited, medical marijuana could be a solution to the drug addiction problems in America.
A look at the drawbacks
Any good investor needs to take a close look at the good and the bad, right? While individuals in the United States seem to be more accepting of marijuana use, the government does not exactly agree, and because of this, the banks are having their hands tied. Here are two possible drawbacks that you should consider before investing in the adult marijuana use initiative.
Laws set a trap-22
Before you invest your money in medical marijuana, it is essential that you understand the dichotomy that exists in our laws. The federal government continues to consider marijuana a Schedule I drug. US Drug Enforcement Agency rejected reprogramming attempt or deprogram the drug in 2016, but cited lack of clinical benefit and safety data as reasons to keep it as a Schedule 1 drug. The marijuana scheduling review process could take years. Due to the current classification, it is almost impossible to begin the formalized testing process on the drug as researchers are faced with large amounts of paperwork.
Making the drug a Schedule 2 drug might even make things more complicated. The Schedule 2 classification would recognize the medical benefits of marijuana, which would give Food and drug administration the power to tightly regulate all marijuana products, which would allow the FDA to be involved in functions such as packaging, marketing and even manufacturing.
Little access to the bank
Cannabis companies have limited access to financial institutions because the federal government considers marijuana a Schedule 1 substance. urge Congress to allow legal marijuana companies to access banking services, but no changes have been made yet. Any banking institution that provides an account or loan to one of these companies could face criminal charges such as money laundering. All of these laws force legitimate businesses to deal in cash only, making this industry a security concern for investors.
Take a decision
Deciding where to put your money can be downright stressful. Do you pick a high risk but maybe high yielding stock or do you have to play it safe and pick one that you should at least make some money with? The choice is yours. Make sure you invest in Marijuana Stocks because you believe in the mission of the business, not just growth. Take a look at these 5 stocks of marijuana before making your final decision.