Investing in Cannabis For Dummies
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One of the key benefits of the Marijuana Stock Universe and the Daily Marijuana Observer’s database is that they cover a wide range of exchanges and markets on which cannabis stocks are traded, including over-the-counter (OTC) stocks. OTC stocks (many of which are penny stocks, meaning they sell for less than five bucks a share) are stocks that aren’t listed on the major exchanges, such as the New York Stock Exchange, Nasdaq, or the Toronto Stock Exchange.

The Daily Marijuana Observer’s list of OTC cannabis stocks

The Daily Marijuana Observer’s OTC-Listed Cannabis Stocks Database is another excellent resource for tracking down over-the-counter cannabis stocks. You can search for stocks by name or ticker symbol or use the filters listed off to the side of the page to browse stocks by country, exchange, or sector.

OTC-Listed Cannabis Stocks Source: Daily Marijuana Observer (

The Daily Marijuana Observer’s OTC-Listed Cannabis Stocks Database

To access the OTC-Listed Cannabis Stocks Database, go to, select Databases (from the menu bar at the top), click Cannabis Stocks, and under Browse a List of All Cannabis Stocks, click Visit Database. You can then browse and search the database in the following ways:

  • Click in the text box below “Search Cannabis Stocks,” type a company name or ticker symbol, and click the Search button.
  • Scroll down the list and use the Next button at the bottom of the list to view additional listings.
  • Use the filters on the right side of the page to narrow the list by country, exchange, or sector. For example, under Browse Stocks by Country, you can choose to view All Cannabis Stocks or only those from certain countries: Australia, Canada, Germany, Israel, the U.K., or the U.S.
  • Use the Sort By options above the list (and off to the right) to sort the list by rating, rating count, or company name. (Click the Sort By option again to flip the order of the list, if desired.)
  • When you find a company or stock that interests you, click the View button (in the lower-right corner of the company’s listing) to view charts and details about that company or stock.
Daily Marijuana Observer Source: Daily Marijuana Observer (

Details about the selected company or stock

Different exchanges and markets

Exchanges and marketplaces covered by the Marijuana Stock Universe and Daily Marijuana Observer’s OTC database include the following:
  • OTCPK: OTC Pink (or OTCPK) is the lowest and most speculative of the three tiers of stocks trading over the counter. Companies listed on the OTCPK market don’t have to meet any disclosure requirements or financial standards and could include companies in default or financial distress. I recommend steering clear of these stocks at least until you’ve built a track record of success trading OTC stocks in the higher tiers.
  • OTCQB: Commonly referred to as “The Venture Market,” OTCQB is the middle tier of stocks trading over the counter. Companies listed in this market are early-stage and developing U.S. and international companies that don’t yet qualify for the higher OTCQX tier. To be included in this market, companies must meet minimum reporting standards, pass a bid test, and undergo annual verification.
  • OTCQX: This is the top tier of the three OTC stocks and includes blue-chip (well-known, established) companies that aren’t listed on the more traditional exchanges (such as NYSE and Nasdaq). To qualify to be listed on the OTCQX, companies must follow certain rules and criteria and are subject to Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulation. Penny stocks are excluded from this market.
  • CV EM: Short for caveat emptor, which is Latin for “buyer beware,” CV EM is a special designation for OTC stocks to warn investors to take special care and perform thorough due diligence before buying shares in the company.
  • Grays: The term “grays” refers to Gray Sheet stocks, which are usually shares in startups or spin-offs that are sold publicly but before they’re officially available for trading on a stock exchange or other financial market. You could find some great deals here or some real lemons.
  • NYSE American: Formerly known as the American Stock Exchange (AMEX) and more recently as NYSE MKT, NYSE American is similar to the NYSE, but it deals mainly in small- and mid-cap stocks and derivatives, so it’s likely to offer a wider variety of cannabis stocks than what’s listed on the NYSE.
  • CSE: Short for Canadian Securities Exchange, CSE is an alternative stock exchange in Canada that offers simplified reporting requirements and reduced barriers to listing for Canadian companies. This makes it easier for small cannabis companies to get listed.
  • TSX: The Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) is one of the largest stock exchanges in North America (listing more than 1,500 companies) and the eighth largest in the world (based on the market capitalization of the companies listed). TSX leans toward listing larger, more established Canadian companies.
  • TSXV: Short for TSX Venture Exchange, TSXV lists smaller Canadian companies that don’t qualify to be listed on the TSX. TSXV is the Canadian equivalent to OTC markets.
  • NSD: Nasdaq is one of the big, formal U.S. stock exchanges. You’ll find stocks for some of the biggest U.S. players in the cannabis space listed on this exchange, but your choice of cannabis stocks will likely be very limited.
  • NYSE: The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) is the largest stock exchange in the world (in terms of market capitalization of its listed companies). As with the Nasdaq, you’ll find stocks for some of the biggest cannabis companies in the U.S., but smaller companies are underrepresented.

Many stock screeners don’t display OTC stocks, which include a vast majority of cannabis stocks. So, when you’re choosing a stock screener, make sure it lists stocks traded on OTC markets; otherwise, your selection of stocks will be severely restricted.

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