What happened

Tilray (NASDAQ:TLRY) stock outperformed a rising market last month. Shares soared 35% in February compared to a 2.6% gain in the S&P 500, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

The rally added to sharp recent gains for the volatile marijuana stock, which has more than doubled since the start of 2021.

An indoor marijuana facility.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Tilray announced positive earnings results last month, with fourth-quarter sales increasing 26% as net loss improved to $3 million from $220 million a year earlier. But investors were even more excited about favorable developments on the regulatory and merger fronts. Tilray struck a deal in February that will give it access to new international markets. A movement aiming to decriminalize marijuana at the federal level appears to be gaining strength in the U.S., too.

Now what

Tilray's annual sales are still tiny in comparison to its massive market capitalization, and so investors should be cautious about making aggressive bets on this (or any other) marijuana stock. Yet the industry could easily be several times larger in just a few years, and Tilray is positioned to be a leading player in that transformation.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.