Banking Institutions Show Inclination to Serve Cannabis Clients Following the Recent Passage of SAFE Act
Financial institutions are getting ready for likely involvement with the marijuana industry; after last month, the U.S. House of Representatives gave its consent to the SAFE Banking Act.
It is still not clear what reaction the Act will receive in the Senate and if President Donald Trump would pass it as a law. With this bill coming into effect, banks across the country can add state-approved cannabis firms to their list of customers without worrying about any penal action.
Some industry experts observing the market believe that it could also lead to the availability of capital for the cannabis industry, which may then lead to the trading of cannabis stocks on key U.S. exchanges.
Sundie Seefried, CEO of Partner Colorado Credit Union, said that they had been inundated with requests from banks wanting to know more about investing in the marijuana business. Colorado Credit Union provides banking facilities for Colorado marijuana businesses, and Safe Harbor, a banking platform for cannabis that was developed by Seefried and then licensed to commercial organizations that want to offer banking facilities to MJ firms.
Some of the market analysts are of the view that small banks and credit unions may be in a better position to offer banking services. However, Seefried sharing his observations said that multinational financial institutions were more interested in getting into this sector.
The SAFE (Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking) Act will be facing the test of passing in the Senate committee vote. Senate Banking Chair Mike Crapo, who is an Idaho Republican, gave indications that he is confident about presenting the proposal of getting the Act passed into a bill in front of the full chamber in 2020.
“It is gaining momentum, but what will really move the needle are the proposed rules coming out and what the banks will do then,” says Mike Kennedy, co-founder of Green Check Verified, a compliance software company based in Connecticut.
He also said that “There are ongoing conversations with banks and there are more canna-curious companies. The bottleneck is actually launching a program.”