Michael Lewis' FTX's 'insane' book on Sam Bankman

Michael Lewis' FTX's 'insane' book on Sam Bankman

Nearly a year on from the collapse of crypto exchange FTX - and on the eve of co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried's trial - author Michael Lewis has enraged those in finance and crypto alike.

Lewis sketched a sympathetic portrait of Sam Bankman-Fried. In CBS's 60 Minutes, Bankman-Fried out was an unfortunate Robin Hood, who stumbled into the multi-billion-dollar collapse of FTX last year.

t been a run on customer deposits, they'd still be sitting there making tons of money, Lewis said. Sam Bankman-Fried, who pleaded not guilty to the charges, genuinely thinks he's innocent, Lewis said.

Lewis has chronicled Wall Street characters in s Poker,' and his latest book.

The reaction from the interview'really shows that when it comes to FTX, crypto and traditional finance are really aligned,' Sean Tuffy, a regulation expert and former Citigroup executive, told DL News.

'' t a fraud and was just undone by market rumours,'' Tuffy told DL News, referring to Lewis comments that FTX was a good business, ultimately undoned by a run on deposits.

Short seller Jim Chanos likened the comments to those of Enron, the energy giant he sounded the alarm of fraud on more than twenty years ago.

'T for those meddling short-sellers and journalists causing a run-on-the-bank, we would've been fine,' Chanos wrote on Twitter.

Insolvency means that a company's overall debt exceeds its total assets, while illiquidity refers to a company that doesn't have enough liquid assets to cover its current debts.

The natives of the cryptocurrency community agree with them. The comments were branded as 'insane' by Mike Dudas, founder of The Block, while Messari's Ryan Selkis said he was infuriated by the interview.

The book is a kind of letter to the jury, Lewis said, before adding that there's going to be a'story war going on in the courtroom' between the prosecution and the defence.

Lewis said he did not know whether he would win, but said he was determined to win.

A year ago, Lewis met Sam Bankman-Fried at the behest of a friend who wanted to invest in him, he took him on a hike in Berkeley Hills California - his jaw was on the floor the entire time.

He was surprised by Lewis' newly minted billionaire, who had no interest in splurging his money on yachts, he wanted to'spend it to save humanity from extinction'.

The conversation put him on a red alert, and he didn't know what it was, but he knew something was going to happen to Sam Bankman-Friend. He did just that, followed him around for the next two years, which culminated in the multi-billion dollar collapse of FTX and its trading arm Alameda Research last November.

The book will be released on October 3, the same day Sam Bankman-Fried's trial will begin.

The one-time Wall Street trader and creator of blockchain, the one-time trader and founder of the company, faces charges of securities fraud, wire fraud and money laundering.

Adam Morgan McCarthy, DL News' London-based correspondent for the markets, works for DL News.