Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to Axios Closer for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Ina Fried/Axios

With recreational marijuana legal in eight states and medicinal use approved in 20 more, investors are seeing the potential to produce a different kind of green.

Why this matters: The cannabis economy is seen as the fastest growing big business in America, increasing 30 percent last year, to $6.7 billion, according to Arcview Market Research.

Enter Oakland-based Gateway, a startup accelerator that invests in cannabis-related startups with potential for high growth. The accelerator just graduated its second class of startups, which range from those that make their own marijuana edibles to hardware companies focused on developing better plant trimmers and vaporizers, to Field, a software startup looking to match growers with workers who know how to trim marijuana plants, a high-demand and hard-to-find skill.

For its first $2 million fund, Gateway gave companies $30,000 in exchange for a 5 percent stake. A new fund, which has yet to close, will offer $50,000 in exchange for the same 5 percent stake. It also runs a co-working space near Jack London Square in Oakland. Like traditional technology accelerators, Gateway aims to pair founders and mentors, offer business coaching, and help startups go from an idea into a real business.

"Although it is a huge and growing industry, there aren't a lot of the normal resources like there are for traditional tech startups," Gateway co-founder Carter Laren told Axios at its demo day, held Tuesday at the Palo Alto office of law firm Morgan Lewis. There, investors heard brief pitches and had a chance to hear more about the companies, ask questions and, in a couple cases, sample the wares.

One potential investor was particularly intrigued by Somatik, which aims to blend cannabis with coffee, partnering initially with Ritual, a popular San Francisco company, on a cold brew. "Whenever I smoke I always drink a shot of expresso," the investor said into his cell phone just outside the event.

Good Co-op aims to offer edibles with consistent, low doses and a taste that rivals non-enhanced baked goods.Ina Fried/Axios

The downside: In addition to the usual risks with investing in startups, cannabis companies face the added risk that marijuana remains illegal at the federal level nationwide, with the current administration seemingly less inclined to look the other way. For a great look at all the complications, I'd point you to John Oliver's recent Last Week Tonight segment on this topic.

Go deeper

The consumer's massive "war chest"

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

Economists expect the pace of economic growth to cool off now that government transfer payments like stimulus checks and emergency unemployment benefits are in the rearview mirror. But evidence suggests that the U.S. consumer is sitting on a lot of financial firepower that could be a key driver of growth in the quarters to come.

Why it matters: U.S. consumer spending is massive, representing about 70% of GDP.

The Fed takes on its own rules amid stock trading controversy

Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

New disclosures that showed Fed officials were active in financial markets set off a firestorm of criticism. Now the Fed may overhaul the long-standing rules that allow those transactions.

Why it matters: What officials actively traded was sensitive to the Fed decisions they helped shape, including the unprecedented support that underpinned a massive financial market boom.

Clarence Thomas says Supreme Court could be "most dangerous" branch

Justice Clarence Thomas on Thursday, during rare public remarks at the University of Notre Dame, warned against politicizing the Supreme Court.

Driving the news: Thomas, the court's longest-serving member, said that the justices do not rule based on "personal preferences" and that politicians should not "allow others to manipulate our institutions when we don’t get the outcome that we like," per the Washington Post.