South Africa

Trading Day – FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried arrested

Sam Bankman-Fried

FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried has been arrested in the Bahamas after the US filed criminal charges.

His arrest is the first concrete move by regulators to hold individuals accountable for the suspected fraud and multibillion-dollar implosion of FTX last month.

US markets started the week strong in anticipation of a potential lower CPI print and a more dovish Fed meeting. The S&P 500 closed 1.4% higher, while the Nasdaq climbed 1.3%.

The Nikkei 225 is up 0.4% in early morning trade, while the Hang Seng index climbed 1%.

Northam Platinum has increased the cash portion of its offer for Royal Bafokeng Platinum.

Gold Fields has announced that CEO Chris Griffith will step down at the end of December.

Here is the biggest news of the day.

  • FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried has been arrested in the Bahamas after the US filed criminal charges. The co-founder and former CEO of bankrupt crypto trading firm FTX was arrested in the Bahamas after the US attorney for the Southern District of New York shared a sealed indictment with the Bahamian government. He is expected to be extradited to the US. His arrest is the first concrete move by regulators to hold individuals accountable for the suspected fraud and multibillion-dollar implosion of FTX last month. The charges include wire fraud, wire fraud conspiracy, securities fraud, securities fraud conspiracy, and money laundering, according to the New York Times, citing a person familiar with the matter. Meanwhile, the Securities and Exchange Commission has initiated a separate set of charges against Bankman-Fried, relating to “violations of our securities laws, which will be filed publicly tomorrow in the Southern District of New York.”
  • Northam Platinum increases cash portion of its offer for Royal Bafokeng Platinum. While the overall offer has remained the same at R172.70 per share, Northam has increased the cash element of the offer and reduced the share-based element accordingly. The cash portion of the offer has increased from R10 billion to R17 billion and is now between R92.48 and R172.70 per share, depending on the level of acceptance.
  • Gold Fields CEO Chris Griffith steps down. Griffith will step down from the board of directors and as CEO with effect from the end of December 2022. Martin Preece, EVP of Gold Fields South Africa, has been appointed to lead the company as Interim CEO and will join the board effective from the start of January. Yunus Suleman, Chairperson of Gold Fields, said “we thank Chris for the commitment and dedication he showed as CEO of Gold Fields, especially during the Yamana transaction. We were all disappointed that the Yamana deal did not go through, as we felt it was a compelling deal which would have created a strong company and created value for all our shareholders. The company is performing well, delivering strong shareholder returns and we continue to deliver on the strategy, including growing the value and quality of our portfolio of assets.”
  • Mantengu Mining has concluded its rights offer to raise R15 million. 77.69% of the new shares have been allocated to the underwriters, while other shareholders were allocated the remaining 22.31%.
  • Rivian puts electric van deal with Mercedes-Benz on hold. US-based electric vehicle manufacturer Rivian said on Monday that it was pausing plans to manufacture electric commercial vans in Europe and would “no longer pursue” the agreement it made with Mercedes-Benz just 3 months ago. “At this point in time, we believe focusing on our consumer business, as well as our existing commercial business, represent the most attractive near-term opportunities to maximize value for Rivian,” CEO RJ Scaringe commented. Rivian said it remains open to exploring future work with Mercedes-Benz “at a more appropriate time.” Mercedes-Benz said Rivian’s decision would not impact the timeline of its electrification strategy or the planned ramp-up of its new electric vehicle manufacturing site in Jawor, Poland.

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