Pot Investors: This “Black Swan” Is Your Friend

Go figure! It took a “black swan” event, in the form of the coronavirus pandemic, to reveal the inherent strengths of the marijuana industry.

I get annoyed whenever I hear a pundit on financial television refer to the coronavirus as an “unexpected black swan.” It usually prompts me to yell at the TV.

Let’s get our definition straight: by its very nature, a black swan is unexpected. A black swan is a shocking surprise that triggers catastrophic consequences. Examples include the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and the 2008 financial meltdown.

Swans are usually white, of course, and black versions of the bird are rarities. Hence the metaphor. No one has modeled a black swan event in their projections, nor have they prepared for one.

The still-unfolding coronavirus outbreak is a human tragedy on a global scale, but it’s an ill wind that blows nobody any good. As a multitude of businesses get ruined by the pandemic, the marijuana industry has actually benefited from this particular black swan.

No one could have predicted that government leaders would one day classify cannabis companies as providers of “essential services,” going so far as to allow curbside delivery of recreational and medical pot.

Nor was it conceivable, before the pandemic struck, that long lines would extend for several city blocks outside of marijuana dispensaries across the nation, as anxious consumers hoarded marijuana.

Read This Story: Reefer Madness: COVID19 Fuels Pot Hoarding

Let’s look at the latest developments in the cannabis industry, especially as they pertain to the pandemic.

Senators stump for cannabis…

Ten U.S. senators, led by Sens. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and Ron Wyden (D-OR), last Wednesday sent a letter urging the chamber’s leadership to include relief for marijuana businesses, under the aegis of the Small Business Administration (SBA), in the next round of stimulus legislation to combat coronavirus. They wrote in part:

“Workers at state-legal cannabis small businesses are no different from workers at any other small business—they show up to work every day, perform their duties, and most importantly, work to provide for their families. This lack of access to SBA assistance for cannabis small businesses will undoubtedly lead to unnecessary layoffs, reduced hours, pay cuts, and furloughs for the workers who need support the most.”

U.S. Reps. Joyce Beatty (D-OH) and Joe Kennedy III (D-MA) also asked the leadership in Congress to ensure that business owners with previous criminal convictions, including those for simple marijuana possession, aren’t disqualified from the SBA Paycheck Protection Program.

Hemp farmers in line for pandemic relief…

Hemp farmers enjoyed a major victory in the latest Senate-passed coronavirus relief legislation, which makes them eligible for SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, a situation that wasn’t the case in previous COVID-19 relief legislation. The bill is scheduled for a vote in the U.S. House today, where it is expected to pass.

The hemp plant, a cousin of marijuana, is naturally high in cannabidiol (CBD) and low in THC. The reverse is true of marijuana. Hemp has a long and illustrious history: people first spun the plant into usable fiber 10,000 years go.

Hemp received a major tailwind with passage of the 2018 Farm Bill. Signed into law on December 20, 2018 by President Trump, the sweeping agricultural legislation essentially decriminalizes hemp.

The hemp industry is booming in the U.S. Lawmakers in both parties are striving to streamline regulations to make it easier for hemp farmers to get access to the financial resources they need.

Companies involved in growing and utilizing hemp occupy an exploding market, as the hemp plant gains respectability and increasingly becomes a cash crop and base material for a huge variety of products.

The public endorses pot legalization…

A new poll conducted April 17-20 by the research group YouGov found that a majority of American adults think state marijuana legalization laws have been a success, with only 6% of respondents saying legalizing recreational cannabis has been a total failure (see chart).

Public sentiment continues to shift in favor of marijuana. For the counterculture of the 1960s and 1970s, smoking pot was an illegal act of rebellion. And today? In many cities throughout America and Canada, it’s as easy to get marijuana delivered to your front door as pizza. This freedom has come in handy, both for marijuana companies and consumers, during the pandemic “social distancing” practices that have clobbered the overall retail industry.

In a clear sign that marijuana has become a mainstream consumer product, several states and localities have deemed recreational and medical pot as essential, amid a coronavirus pandemic that’s devastating the economy as a whole. Accordingly, pot sales are surging to record highs amid the outbreak.

Many states have legalized curbside or door-to-door delivery of marijuana, to make it easier and safer for quarantined citizens to obtain marijuana.

Accordingly, after undergoing a sharp correction in late 2019, many marijuana stocks are bouncing back, even as the broader stock market swoons, because of coronavirus-fueled sales.

Now’s the time to scoop up marijuana value plays, before their share prices get expensive again. For our special report on the best pot stocks to buy, click here now.

John Persinos is the editor-in-chief of Marijuana Investing Daily. You can reach him at: mailbag@investingdaily.com