Ackman says FTX fiasco is one of the most egregious cases of ‘gross negligence’

Hedge fund giant Bill Ackman appears to be pulling back on comments he made on Twitter last week about Sam Bankman-Fried that some have said were tacit endorsement of someone at a high level. 30 years old, who presided over one of the most epic bankruptcies in financial markets in recent memory.

Last week, Ackman tweeted that Bankman-Fried’s statements made in a widely watched interview, streamed live to New York from the crypto founder’s location in the Bahamas, were ” reliable”.

“Many people have interpreted my tweet to mean that I am defending SBF or somehow supporting him. Nothing could be further from the truth,” Ackman wrote Saturday, referring to Bankman-Fried by his initials SBF.

Ackman went on to describe the collapse of Bankman-Fried’s crypto exchange FTX and some of its related businesses, as “at a minimum, this is a case of large-scale business negligence. , the most severe I have ever observed in my career.”

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Ackman, the chief executive officer of Pershing Square Capital, a well-known investor in traditional markets and a crypto advocate, last week tweeted the announcement following a much-followed interview. by Bankman-Fried at the New York Times Transaction Book Summit:

“Call me crazy, but I think SBF is telling the truth.”

ackman was punished by some for apparently providing verbal assistance to someone who at least some have accused of mismanaging client assets.

Speaking against the wishes of his lawyers, Bankman-Fried on Wednesday, in an interview with Dealbook, admitted to making mistakes but said he never intended to mix client funds with money. company for leveraged bets on cryptocurrencies through the hedge fund Alameda Research, which he founded before starting FTX.

“I don’t know exactly what’s going on,” Bankman said at the time.

At least one reply to Ackman’s Saturday tweet questioned whether the hedge funder may be reacting to responses from his own clients.

This is not the first time Ackman has positively evaluated Bankman-Fried’s actions. As the FTX boom was underway, Ackman said, in a now-deleted tweet, that he had never before seen a CEO as responsible as the crypto exchange operator did and he want to give “credit” for their actions. “That reflects well on him and the possibility of a more favorable outcome” for FTX, he wrote.

On Saturday, a Twitter user asked Ackman if he had any ties to Bankman-Fried, to which the investor bluntly said he didn’t.

Bankman-Fried was once considered a financial darling in and out of the crypto industry until his empire collapsed. on 11/11 and revealed that affiliated hedge fund Alameda lost billions of dollars in FTX client funds in leveraged crypto bets.

John Ray, the new chief executive officer of FTX, in a filing with the United States Bankruptcy Court for the County of Delaware, describe the state of the cryptocurrency platform “is a complete failure of corporate control and the utter absence of reliable financial information.”


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