U.S. Marijuana Index, compiled by Marijuana International Corporation, has delivered 28% returns over the past one year, as of April 19, 2018. This despite a lot of volatility in marijuana policy during the course of the year on account of hard line policy stance taken by the new U.S. government. Even though it has been fueled by the Trump rally, the S&P 500 has over the past year generated only 15.8% returns. (See also: ETF Focused On Marijuana Industry Launched.)

Graph Credit: marijuanaindex.com

In anticipation of the vote on legalization of marijuana in many states on November 9, the index hit a 52 week high on Oct 31, 2016 reaching the highs of 110.64 points. It is currently trading close to 89 point level. With more states voting to legalize some form of marijuana, the opportunities for business have increased and that makes for a good reason to invest in companies that work in this space. (See also: The Economic Benefits of Legalizing Weed.)

The marijuana index has a market cap of more than $6.25 billion and is equally weighted among 17 companies that have at least 50% of their operations focussed on the marijuana business. In order to qualify for the index, companies need to maintain an average Trading Score of 20 over th eprevious quarter. This score is calculated based on a weighted average of indivdual scores given to each company at the end of evry trading day in three categories- market capitalization, daily trading volume and share price. See the full methodology here. The index is rebalanced quarterly.

Most stocks on the index are listed in the over the counter or OTC markets which perhaps adds to the risk accompanied by investing in them. However, there are others as well. One of the largest companies on the index is U.K. based firm GM Pharmaceuticals (GWPH) that commands a market cap of close to $3.76 billion but trades on the NASDAQ via an American Depository Receipt (ADR). Another one, Innovative Industrial Properties (IIPR) is listed on the NYSE.

These are the stocks that make up the U.S. marijuana index:

Company Ticker Market Cap (In Millions)
GW Pharmaceuticals Plc   GWPH $3,760
Axim Biotechnologies Inc   AXIM $295.44
MPX Bioceutical Corporation   MPX:CNX $281.16
Liberty Health Sciences Inc. LHS:CNX $276.06
Kush Bottles Inc   KSHB $266.99
CannaRoyalty Corp   CRZ:CNX $208.52
MariMed Inc   MRMD $203.07
General Cannabis Corp CANN $160.91
Golden Leaf Holdings Ltd   GLH:CNX $147.87
Cannabics Pharmaceuticals Inc   CNBX $124.10
Innovative Industrial Properties Inc.   IIPR $114.37
MCIG Inc   MCIG $93.03
Solis Tek Inc   SLTK $93.00
GrowGeneration Corp   GRWG $90.47
CV Sciences Inc.   CVSI $50.69
Surna Inc   SRNA $49.44
Terra Tech Corp   TRTC $11.77

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