Banks still scared of cannabis businesses

Author: John Crabb | Published: 3 Apr 2019

The majority of US banks remain incredibly wary of providing services to cannabis or related businesses in the US, despite advancements in federal law that are further legitimising the sector.

The House Financial Services Committee has voted to advance the Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act, or the SAFE Act, which could help the financial services sector provide banking services to cannabis-related businesses in the US.

Although cannabis is currently legal in 10 states in the US for recreational use, and 33 for medical use, federally it remains a controlled substance as designated by the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). If passed by Congress and the Senate, the SAFE Act would offer a level of protection for national financial institutions looking to make investments into 'cannabis-related legitimate businesses'.

Estimates suggest that the legal cannabis industry could be worth as much as $30 billion globally within the next four years. One regulatory...