Pubdate: Sat, 22 Mar 2014
Source: Virgin Islands Daily News, The (VI)
Copyright: 2014 Virgin Islands Daily News
Author: Gary Strauss, USA Today
Bookmark: (GW Pharmaceuticals)
Page: 11


The non-profit Financial Industry Regulatory Authority says investors
should remain wary and research pot stocks before they consider buying.

Wall Street seems to be losing its appetite for pot.

Marijuana stocks were high flyers - so to speak- after Colorado and
Washington states legalized pot sales and several other states
announced they may legalize sales or decriminalize possession. Shares
in about 20 marijuana-related companies began soaring, with some
gaining more than 500 percent off 52-week lows.

But marijuana mania continues to fade as investors realize there's
more smoke than fire at many companies, which show "pot-tential" but
little actual revenue. CannaVest, which specializes in industrial hemp
production, had climbed to $180 a share last month. Trading at $62.40
Friday, it's lost nearly two-thirds of its market value.

Thursday, the Las Vegas based company suggested its still a bit of a
gamble, saying it is "continuing its plans to be in the forefront of
establishing a domestic industrial cultivation and production
infrastructure" and that it's "partnering and collaborating on
research and pilot projects in states where hemp has been legalized."

Vape Holdings, which markets marijuana vaporizers and e-cigarettes, is
trading at $28.89. It traded more than 40 percent higher earlier this
month. AVT, a manufacturer of medical marijuana dispensers, is down 50
percent from its January, $8 high.

Many pot stocks are thinly traded "pink sheet" stocks, little followed
by stock analysts and able to forego the financial reporting
requirements of larger, more established companies.

Among them, GreenGro Tech, trading at 57 cents, is now off 53 percent
from its January $1.20 peak. Cannabis Sativa, now at $10.50, 42
percent below an $18 high.

Medical Marijuana, at 31 cents a share, is off 35 percent from a
52week high. Cannabusiness Group, down 15 percent the last two days,
is at 25 cents, down nearly 50 percent from a 48 cent peak on Tuesday.
Hemp Inc., which traded at 34 cents Feb. 5, is at 11 cents, a 68
percent fall.

Aventura Equities, which holds licensing rights to medical marijuana
products, trades at 5 cents. On Feb. 26, CEO Richard Armstrong said
loyal shareholders "have an opportunity to participate in an industry
sector that will reward their patience." Shares closed at 41 cents
that day, 720 percent higher than current levels.

The non-profit Financial Industry Regulatory Authority says investors
should remain wary and research pot stocks before they consider buying.

"These stocks can be incredibly volatile and you can see significant
prices swings with low trading volume," says Gerri Walsh, head of
FINRA's investor education. FINRA issued an alert last August, saying
scammers were touting the stocks, riding fat gains and then dumping

The lone pot-related stock to maintain its relative high: American
Depositary shares of GW Pharmaceuticals, trading at $68 and down just
20 percent from its peak. The London-based biotech firm is developing
therapeutics from cannabinoids to treat epileptic seizures, Type 2
diabetes and schizophrenia. Its Sativex medication, designed to treat
cancer pain medication, is in clinical trials. Shares are up 700
percent from July 2013 lows.
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