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Why Tilray Stock Sank Today

By Keith Speights – Feb 24, 2020 at 3:00PM

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An analyst downgrade weighed on the Canadian cannabis producer's shares.

What happened

Shares of Tilray (TLRY) were sinking 9.8% lower as of 2:47 p.m. EST on Monday following an analyst downgrade of the stock. Cowen analyst Vivien Azer lowered her rating for Tilray to market perform from outperform.

So what

What's more important than an analyst downgrade is the reasoning behind the downgrade. In this case, Vivien Azer now thinks that the challenges that faced marijuana stocks, including Tilray, in 2019 won't be resolved quickly.

In particular, Azer isn't optimistic that new retail cannabis stores will open quickly enough to boost revenue significantly in the near term. She's also concerned about pricing pressure. Consumers in the Canadian adult-use recreational marijuana market have shifted toward value brands, a move that will reduce average selling prices and hurt gross margins for cannabis producers.

Shadow of Canadian maple leaf on a pile of cannabis leaves.

Image source: Getty Images.

Although the Cannabis 2.0 market should pick up some momentum in 2020, Azer doesn't think sales will be as great as initially hoped. She now forecasts that total Canadian cannabis sales in 2020 (including adult-use recreational marijuana and medical cannabis as well as taxes) will be 3.5 billion Canadian dollars, 32% lower than her previous projection.

Now what

The next milestone for Tilray will probably be its fourth-quarter update. While the company hasn't scheduled reporting of its Q4 results yet, it should do so soon. Those results probably won't provide a reason for investors to get excited, though. Tilray announced a restructuring initiative earlier this month and cut 10% of its workforce.

Keith Speights has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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