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Bankman-Fried Says He Was Wrong About FTX's Leverage Levels: Not $5B but $13B

Cointime Staff· 2 min read

Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried said on Twitter that he was “wrong” in his estimation of the FTX’sleverage, claiming the leverage wasn’t $5 billion but roughly $13 billion, “total run on the bank, total collapse in asset value, all at once”.

More from the thread:

19) Once upon a time--a month ago--FTX was a valuable enterprise. FTX had ~$10-15b of daily volume, and roughly $1b of annual revenue. $40b of equity value. And we were held as paragons of running an effective company.

20) I was on the cover of every magazine, and FTX was the darling of Silicon Valley. We got overconfident and careless.

21) And problems were brewing. Larger than I realized. [AGAIN THESE NUMBERS ARE APPROXIMATE, TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE, ETC.] Leverage built up-- ~$5b of leverage, backed by ~$20b of assets which were.... Well, they had value. FTT had value, in EV! But they had risk.

22) And that risk was correlated--with the other collateral, and with the platform. And then the crash came. In a few day period, there was a historic crash--over 50% in most correlated assets, with no bid side liquidity. And at the same time there was a run on the bank. 

23) Roughly 25% of customer assets were withdrawn each day--$4b. As it turned out, I was wrong: leverage wasn't ~$5b, it was ~$13b. $13b leverage, total run on the bank, total collapse in asset value, all at once. Which is why you don't want that leverage. 

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