STORY: The world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, said on Tuesday that it had signed a non-binding agreement to buy its major rival FTX's non-U.S. unit, FTX.com, to help cover a "liquidity crunch." Binance CEO, CZ, said in a tweet that FTX, run by billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried, had "asked for our help.”
This deal underscores an abrupt reversal of fortune for Bankman-Fried, who once positioned himself as crypto exchanges’ savior by rescuing rivals in trouble. But now his company needs the saving. According to a message Bankman-Fried sent to staff that was seen by Reuters, FTX saw around $6 billion of withdrawals in the 72 hours before Tuesday morning.
The cryptocurrency market has fallen by about two-thirds from its peak of over $1 trillion. Binance dominates the trillion crypto industry and has over 120 million users. Reuters reported that it is under investigation by the U.S. Justice Department for possible violations of money-laundering rules.