‘The Big Short’ Author Michael Lewis Is Writing A Book About The FTX Shitshow
— 16 November 2022

‘The Big Short’ Author Michael Lewis Is Writing A Book About The FTX Shitshow

— 16 November 2022
Garry Lu
Garry Lu

Michael Lewis, noted financial journalist and best-selling author of Moneyball and The Big Short fame, is in the process of writing yet another one of his signature books about Sam Bankman-Fried and the $32 billion implosion of the latter’s Bahamas-based cryptocurrency exchange FTX.

While this may appear as though Lewis is simply jumping on the meme-rich bandwagon, a leaked email sent from his CAA agent Matthew Snyder (via The Ankle) to certain Hollywood contacts revealed that he’s actually spent the past six months with Bankman-Fried, long before FTX’s bankruptcy.

According to said email, the scope of the book will look beyond the recent downfall, examining everything from the 30-year-old “whizkid’s” childhood, early success in Wall Street, embrace of effective altruism, as well as the creation of a crypto empire that catapulted him into the ranks of the world’s richest in record time. Little did Lewis know, Bankman-Fried would also lose it all in record time.

RELATED: Sam Bankman-Fried Loses Billionaire Status In Single Day (And 94% Of Net Worth)

“Of course, the events of the past week have provided a dramatic surprise ending to the story,” Snyder stated in his bid to shop the forthcoming book’s movie rights.

“It also highlighted the rivalry between Bankman-Fried and Binance head [Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao AKA CZ]. Michael likens them to the Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader of crypto.”

“Michael hasn’t written anything yet, but the story has become too big for us to wait. Let me know if I’ve piqued your interest.”

A few months prior, Michael Lewis himself coyly hinted at what we could expect from his latest project.

“I really don’t want to reveal exactly what I’m writing about. But I found a character through whom I can write about – it weirdly links up Flash BoysThe Big Short, and Liar’s Poker,” he told Financial News in reference to his previous books.

“I’m essentially over the next year going to be at this person’s hip. I don’t know quite what the story looks like yet.”

“I guess it is possible it will be framed as a crypto book, but it won’t be a crypto book. It’ll be about this really unusual character. You’ll learn all about crypto and you’ll learn about what screwed up market structure in the United States and so on.”

The entire FTX saga is an exceedingly fascinating tale that requires a writer far more talented than I (i.e. Michael Lewis) to adequately explain. But the broad strokes of the timeline are essentially as follows…

  • FTX is founded in 2019 and achieves a multi-billion-dollar valuation in relatively no time ($32 billion at its peak: January 2022)
  • Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao acquires 20% stake in FTX; at this stage, CZ and Sam Bankman-Fried are on friendly terms.
  • Due to a falling out between SBF and CZ, the latter cashes out around mid-2021 but takes FTX’s native token FTT instead of cash.
  • Last week, after months of back and forth between the friends turned bitter rivals – the bulk of which involves SBF’s considerable political sway and regulatory crackdowns – CZ dumps $580 million worth of FTT, causing widespread panic.
  • FTX encounters what’s known as a “liquidity crunch”; struggles to accommodate the sudden demand for withdrawals from investors.
  • Sam Bankman-Fried loses both billionaire status and 94% of his net worth in a single day, later sliding even further from a peak of $16 billion to owing around $600 million.

[Note: For a brilliant and easy-to-follow explanation detailing how Binance and CZ pretty much dismantled FTX, head over to the article recently published by Fortune here.]

RELATED: Bill Gates Calls Bullshit On Crypto & NFTs (Again)

'Big Short' Author Michael Lewis To Write Book About FTX Fiasco
  • Around the same time, it’s revealed that SBF has allegedly been misappropriating billions of FTX customers’ dollars to sister organisation Alameda Research – helmed by ex-girlfriend and one of his polyamorous partners Caroline Ellison – where he was regularly making bets he couldn’t cover.
  • Just to add some more flavour, Caroline Ellison has publicly admitted to regular amphetamine use via Twitter, which she claims “makes you appreciate how dumb a lot of normal, non-medicated human experience is” (Lmao).
  • Bankman-Fried is replaced as FTX’s CEO by John J Ray III, an American lawyer who oversaw the liquidation of Enron – the Texas energy company that famously collapsed circa 2001 after massive financial fraud was exposed (Double Lmao).
  • The Royal Bahamas Police Force, US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, US Securities & Exchange Commission, as well as the US Department of Justice all currently have open investigations on FTX.

Should make for a cracking read, and an even better screen adaptation.

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Garry Lu
After stretching his legs with companies such as The Motley Fool and the odd marketing agency, Garry joined Boss Hunting in 2019 as a fully-fledged Content Specialist. In 2021, he was promoted to News Editor. Garry proudly retains a blue belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, black bruises from Muay Thai, as well as a black belt in all things pop culture. Drop him a line at [email protected]


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