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FTX Didn’t Have Enough Funds To Back Customer Deposits As Early as March 2021, Accounting Expert Says

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Crypto exchange FTX didn’t have enough funds to repay user deposits as early as March 2021, an accounting expert revealed yesterday in the trial of founder Sam Bankman-Fried on charges of fraud and conspiracy.

By June last year, the exchange’s situation had deteriorated to such an extent that it had bank balances of about $2 billion to back more than $11 billion in customer deposits, University of Notre Dame accounting professor Peter Easton told the court.

Easton, who previously helped prosecutors in bankruptcies including Enron and WorldCom, also showed how customer deposits were channelled into various business investments.

“We can conclude all of the purchase of Modulo Capital was made using customer funds,” he said referencing a Bahamian financial firm owned by FTX.

Easton also revealed that customer funds played a pivotal role in FTX’s substantial investment in SkyBridge Capital, a company led by Anthony Scaramucci, who was briefly former President Donald Trump’s communications director. 

FTX Customer Funds Directed To Company Owned By Bankman-Fried

FTX customers were also the primary contributors to a $550 million FTX investment in Genesis Digital Assets, a bitcoin mining firm

The professor showed a chart to reveal how funds from FTX users were directed into a bank account belonging to Paper Bird, Inc., a company solely owned by Bankman-Fried.

Most of a $100 million investment by FTX founder into Dave, Inc., a mobile banking platform, was funded by FTX users through Paper Bird, Easton added.

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