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BofA Analyst: Canopy Poised For Growth As Democrats Hope For Marijuana Legalization

As the 2020 election heats up, Smith Falls, Ontario-based Canopy Growth Corp. (TSX: WEED)(NYSE: CGC) is hustling to gai additional U.S. market access, according to a Bank of America Global Research analysis.

The year-long process to acquire New York-based Acreage Holdings, Inc. (CSE: ACRG.U) (OTCQX: ACRHF) is giving results, as the cannabis companies agreed to introduce the Tweed brand in several U.S. states.

Moreover, Canopy inked a loan financing deal worth CA$80.5 million ($58.59 million) with TerrAscend Corp.’s (OTCQX: TRSSF) subsidiary, earlier this year. In addition, it strengthened its presence in the U.S. by the launch of its new e-commerce website — ShopCanopy.com. 

Post-Election Outlook

BofA analysts Bryan Spillane and Lisa Lewandowski wrote in a Monday note that cannabis legalization would be the “major political issue,” following the U.S. presidential election between President Donald Trump and Former Vice President Joe Biden.

“We don’t expect a debate on whether the U.S. will legalize cannabis on a federal level in all jurisdictions, but rather for the federal government to defer to states, with a federal framework,” the analysts said.

Certain issues would be clarified if the Congress and/or the White House moves “in favor of the Democrats.” They include:

  • Banking reform (the SAFE Banking Act)

  • Elimination of cannabis from Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act

  • Resolution of conflicts between federal and state laws

  • Criminal Justice Reform

  • Access to cannabis for veterans

High-Profile Ballot Measures

Meantime, voters across the four states are deciding on seven ballot measures regarding marijuana.

Mississippi and South Dakota would decide on legalizing medical marijuana. Arizona, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota would vote on the recreational use of cannabis. Montana is poised to define a legal age for marijuana.

Analysts believe that New Jersey and Arizona would be “the most important cannabis-related ballot measures to watch.”

If NJ voters pass the initiative, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island would gain “momentum to pass,” they anticipate.

Arizona’s ballot measure — if passed — would allow “5 contiguous Western states (>60mn people)” to “have full adult use legalization,” analysts added.

“Mississippi shifting to medical use would build on other conservative states,” including Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Utah, which allow the medical use of cannabis, they disclosed.

Recreational And Medical Use

The recreational use of marijuana is legalized in 11 states and the District of Columbia, so far, including nine states that achieved the goal by citizen initiatives and two through bills. In addition, adult-use cannabis is available to 28% of the population.

Currently, 33 states and the District of Colombia have either legalized or decriminalized the medical use of cannabis, with 65% of the population having access. In 13 states, the use of cannabidiol (CBD) for medical purposes is legal.

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