Nasdaq gets its first cannabis company
Cronos Group Inc. will be the first cannabis company added to the Nasdaq stock index, according to reports. The company, based in Toronto, Canada, will be listed on the stock exchange as "CRON," and is essentially an investing group for cannabis companies, including Peace Naturals (that makes cannabis oil), OGBC (a grower), and a few other companies. Not surprisingly, on news that Cronos was coming to the Nasdaq, the price jumped a bit, but it's currently settled back down around $7.50 or so.
Though it's not exactly a high-price stock, just the fact that a major stock exchange is trading a cannabis company's stock is big news for the industry. Cannabis has always been profitable, both for the business owners and for the governments that take their taxes in, but the financial sector has been reticent to get involved, given the legal gray area that the drug is in at the moment. Legitimizing companies that sell cannabis by listing their stocks, however, will go a long way towards getting banks on the right side, and eventually making sure the drug has the correct legal status. Undoubtedly there will be more large cannabis companies like this that find legitimacy (and eventually success) on the financial markets.