Merrill Lynch to accept more clients with marijuana-related wealth, report says

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Wealth management firm Merrill Lynch is relaxing its approach to taking on new clients with at least some marijuana-related business assets.

“Merrill executives unveiled plans for ‘streamlining’ and adding more ‘flexibility’ to the process of onboarding clients who own or invest in marijuana-related businesses,” AdvisorHub reported, citing an internal message from company executives to financial advisers.

Clients in “lower risk situations” might be approved without an executive’s consent, according to the financial advisory news website.

AdvisorHub added that “the policy change provides flexibility for clients who have a small part of their overall net worth connected to marijuana-related businesses, according to the company.”

A Merrill spokesperson confirmed the authenticity of the internal message to AdvisorHub but declined to provide more details about the policy change.

Many U.S. financial brokerages are still concerned about accepting clients with cannabis-related businesses because of the ongoing federal ban on marijuana, according to the report.

Merrill is a subsidiary of Bank of America.