Pot stocks are getting a boost from recently enacted U.S. marijuana laws.
Over the last 12 months, Cannabis Science Inc. (OTCMKTS: CBIS) has climbed 30.8%, Hemp Inc. (OTCMKTS: HEMP) is up 47.37%, Enertopia Corp. (OTCMKTS: ENRT) has gained 96.67%, and Creative Edge Nutrition Inc. (OTCMKTS: FITX) is up a whopping 3,228%.
But they aren't the only ones benefiting from the country's changing stance on marijuana legalization…
There's also Denver Broncos' quarterback Peyton Manning.
You see, in late 2011, Colorado voted to legalize recreational marijuana use. Sales in the state began on Jan. 1 of this year, and now Colorado's had a banner year for tax revenue. Total revenue from marijuana taxes, licenses, and fees reached $7 million in June (the most recent available data). And in July, recreational sales ($29.7 million) surpassed medical sales ($28.9 million) for the first time ever.
So what's made Manning a beneficiary of pot spending?
His purchase of 21 Papa John's pizza stores statewide in late 2011, just before the legalization vote.
"There's some different laws out here in Colorado," Manning joked in an interview with Sports Illustrated a couple of weeks ago. "Pizza business is pretty good out here, believe it or not, due to some recent law changes."
According to TMZ, Manning's locations raked in record sales post-legalization. One store alone saw a 25% profit increase in 2013.
While Manning's cashing in, you can, too. There's more marijuana money to go around that'll fuel pot stocks higher; take a look.
The U.S. Pot Market Is Taking Off
Washington's the only other state that voted for legalization so far, and it's flying high as well. Only two months after its first recreational use pot shops opened their doors in July, total sales have more than doubled, from $3.2 million in July to $6.9 million in August.
Monthly tax revenue there shot up from roughly $805,000 to $1.75 million. It's estimated that the state's recreational marijuana market will bring in nearly $190 million over a four-year period starting mid-2015, according to the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council.
Not only are the states that have legalized cannabis use raking in cash, but their success is encouraging more states to open up their free markets to the drug.
Right now, 15 states have decriminalized certain amounts of possession of the drug, and 40 states have taken at least some action to ease their drug laws since 2009, according to Pew Research Center.
And as Manning's statement suggests, public sentiment toward the drug is becoming drastically more positive.