A Tale of Neighboring Countries and Their Very Different Legal-Marijuana Banking Systems


Springfield Bank of Illinois pulled out of working with legal medical marijuana companies in the state this month, leaving many businesses working on a cash-only basis while scrambling to find another banking partner. The bank tied the move directly to actions taken by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions earlier this year, rescinding Obama-era rules that essentially kept the federal government from interfering in states where marijuana is legal.

Meanwhile, in Canada, just the opposite is happening. The Bank of Montreal already is involved in two deals with legal marijuana companies and TD Bank Group is considering involvement as the country prepares to make cannabis legal nationwide this summer for both medical and recreational use.

TD Bank Group CEO Bharat Masrani told The Canadian Press that national legalization is an “important data point.” He said TD Bank Group is actively studying cannabis investment in the cannabis industry. Both TD

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