‘I Got A Little Cocky’: Disgraced Crypto CEO Admits He ‘Wasn’t Even Trying’ To Manage Risk

Screenshot / Twitter / Good Morning America

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Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of cryptocurrency exchange FTX which collapsed in November amid allegations the company was mishandling billions in customer funds, said he “got a little cocky” in a Thursday morning interview with George Stephanopoulos of “Good Morning America.”

“You said one of your great talents in a podcast was managing risks … that’s obviously wrong,” Stephanopoulos said to Bankman-Fried. The former billionaire responded that the deeper problem was that he “wasn’t even trying” to manage risks on FTX, which Stephanopoulos characterized as a “stunning admission.” (RELATED: Sam Bankman-Fried Says He’s Had A Bad Month, Crowd Laughs)

“Yeah, I mean, I don’t know what to say, like what happened, happened, and if I had been — if I had been spending an hour a day thinking about risk management on FTX I don’t think that would have happened,” Bankman-Fried replied. “I think I stopped working as hard for a bit. You know, honestly if I look back on myself, I think I got a little cocky, I mean more than a little bit, and I think part of me like, you know, felt like we made it.”

Bankman-Fried also denied knowledge of any “improper use of customer funds,” after repeated questioning from Stephanopoulos about the extent of the relationship between FTX and the trading house Bankman-Fried founded, Alameda Research. This mirrored his claim that he “did not try to commit fraud on anyone,” in a Thursday evening interview with CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin at The New York Times’ Dealbook Summit.

Allegations that FTX loaned roughly $10 billion of the $16 billion clients had kept on the exchange to Alameda reinvigorated investigations into the company by U.S. federal prosecutors and the Department of Justice, as well as federal regulators at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The fallout from these allegations reportedly prompted Bankman-Fried’s mother, Barbara Fried, to resign from the Democrat-aligned dark money group Mind the Gap, of which she was chair of the board of directors.

FTX did not immediately respond to a Daily Caller News Foundation request for comment.

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