Marijuana is big business.
The once-shadowy industry has transformed into a highly commercialized and profitable sector, spanning biotech and research companies as well as marijuana growers and consumer retailers.
About 428,059 full-time jobs were supported by the legal cannabis industry in January 2022, according to a report by Leafly and Whitney Economics.
By 2030, the US legal marijuana market is expected to reach $40 billion, according to a June 2022 report by Grand View Research.
Buying into an emerging industry poised for moonshot growth is enough to make any investor’s mouth water.
But the cannabis business isn’t like other cash crops. It’s still illegal at the federal level, which can make investing in marijuana stocks tricky.
Marijuana investments involve risk — but is the potential upshot worth it?
In this guide, we’ll explore the different types of marijuana companies, pros and cons of investing in the industry, top cannabis stocks and more.
Current Marijuana Legislation in the United States
States began legalizing medical marijuana more than 20 years ago. By August 2022, 37 states plus the District of Columbia now permit the sale of medical weed.
Recreational use is also booming. In 2012, Colorado and Washington became the first states to legalize recreational marijuana for adult use. A decade later in 2022, 19 states plus DC now permit recreational usefurther expanding the legal cannabis industry.
In 2018, the production of hemp and, by extension, CBD oil was legalized at the national level. (The US government defines hemp as any cannabis plant containing less than 0.3% of THC, the psychoactive substance that gets users high.)
But the effort to legalize marijuana at the federal level remains stalled.
A current bill in the US Senate called the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act would decriminalize marijuana on the federal level and allow states to set their own cannabis laws without fear of federal…