Weekly Roundup

Hedging Strategies: Investors are reeling from failed US stock hedging strategies meant to protect investors from market declines. Funds that focused on buying equity-put options — and those who purchased call options on the Cboe’s Vix index — have especially struggled to make gains.

Fintech Layoffs: Many Fintech companies have had layoffs this past month, but the layoffs keep coming. Chime confirmed that it is letting go of 12% of its employees, Opendoor announced it was letting go of 18% of its staff, Chargebee laid off about 10% of its staff, and Stripe laid off 14% of its staff, among others.

Fintech Adoption: According to a study by FIS, Millennials lead the way when it comes to fintech adoption. The study found that 32% of millennials are likely to use banking services from a fintech or neobank in the next year compared to 22% of Gen Z, 13% of Gen X, and 5% of baby boomers.

Stablecoin falls: The world’s largest stablecoin fell further away from its one-to-one peg to the dollar. One unit of Tether fell to $0.9775. Tether’s Chief Technology Officer, Paolo Ardoino, tweeted that Tether had processed $700 million in withdrawals in 24 hours.

SEC Investigation: The SEC and DOJ are investigating the Crypto platform FTX following its sudden implosion this week. Agency officials believe some of FTX.US’s assets, as well as FTX’s lending product, might constitute securities that, under U.S. law, should have been registered with the SEC before being sold to investors.

FTX Withdrawals: Crypto exchange FTX has reopened withdrawals after halting them earlier this week due to liquidity issues. One user was able to withdraw $2.6 million worth of ether (ETH) while another was able to get $1.3 million of USDC out of the exchange. A total of $6.8 million was withdrawn in an hour.

In the Mix: This Week’s Top FinTech Thought Leader

  • Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO of FTX, broke his silence following FTX’s dramatic crash this week. Bankman-Fried tweeted, “I’m still fleshing out every detail of, but at a very high level, I fucked up twice…the first time, a poor internal labeling of bank-related accounts meant that I was substantially off on my sense of users’ margin. I thought it was way lower… I also should have been communicating more very recently.”

  • Christopher Waller, Federal Reserve Governor, vocalized his continued skepticism of a potential U.S. digital currency, saying, “the case for adopting one is not yet convincing to me and many others.” Fed policymakers remain divided on the need for a central bank digital currency, with Fed Vice Chair Lael Brainard, second in command at the Fed, among those expressing support.

  • Episode 1 of Study Hall season 2 is out now! This episode explores all things fintech and elections with Kalshi’s Tarek Mansour and DC strategist Katelynn Bradley. Listen here: http://bit.ly/3E06Obk