Here's What Needs To Happen Next For Marijuana Stocks To Be Uplisted On Major US Exchanges

President Biden's recent announcement regarding marijuana pardons was a historic step toward cannabis legalization on the federal level. The next one is a review of cannabis' legal status, said Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Kenneth Shea.

Biden in fact said he would ask the Attorney General and Department of Health and Human Services to review marijuana's classification under federal law as a Schedule I drug, which happens to be the same as heroin and LSD.

BofA Securities' analysts Lisa K. Lewandowski and Bryan D. Spillane said recently that "it does not appear that the president could directly de/re-schedule by executive order." They instead expect that the Senate's composition following the elections will set the pace for reform legislation being placed on the floor for a vote.

Meanwhile, cannabis stocks spiked following Biden's announcement though a review of its legal status has the potential to transform those very stocks into initial public offering candidates for major exchanges, Shea said in an interview.

For example, the AdvisorShares Pure US Cannabis ETF NYSE:MSOS jumped 34% the day Biden announced the scheduling review.

Bloomberg's Shea said that if the Democrats hold a majority in Congress after the midterms, progress toward legalization is a plausible scenario followed by "a subsequent rush of equity capital markets activity."

"There is potential to recognize a market opportunity of up to $80 billion in the US alone and such action would send shockwaves throughout the western world," he said.

For now, investors are not making any big moves.

"There's not a lot of institutional buying and trading because they don't want to be perceived as abetting the industry," Shea said. "For companies that have sound business models and want to gain respect over time, they need to be uplisted to get the respect and liquidity they need."

Photo: Courtesy of geralt and Kindel Media by Pixabay

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