Retail sales are bleak, unless you’re selling pot

The selling of medical marijuana is considered an essential business in 20+ states

Landlords of cannabis production facilities and dispensaries are outperforming the market (Getty, iStock)
Landlords of cannabis production facilities and dispensaries are outperforming the market (Getty, iStock)

Though many retailers saw sales nosedive through the pandemic, marijuana product sales remained steady — and even saw gains in some states.

As a result, landlords of cannabis production facilities and dispensaries are outperforming the market, in spite of legislative hurdles at the federal level, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Innovative Industrial Properties’ shares are up 54 percent since mid-March as the pandemic hit the country. The real estate investment trust bested the FTSE Nareit All Reits Index, which was up 19 percent by comparison.

Innovative Industrial Properties has also gone on a $176 million shopping spree while the country has been in lockdown to purchase five new sites.

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Though some companies halted acquisitions over concern that the production and sale of cannabis products may not be deemed essential, over 20 states deemed the industry essential.

Sales increased in Florida 56 percent year-over-year. There has also been strong demand in Illinois and Pennsylvania. That stands in contrast to the larger retail sector where April sales were the worst on record.

But in states like Massachusetts where recreational-use cannabis was deemed non-essential, there have been weaker sales. Nevada also saw sales fall, which is attributed to the fall off in Las Vegas tourism. [WSJ] — Erin Hudson

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