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FTX crypto exchange CEO buys big stake in Robinhood

NEW YORK (AP) – The CEO of cryptocurrency exchange FTX bought a 7.6-per-cent stake in Robinhood Markets, according to a filing with United States (US) regulators recently.

Samuel Bankman-Fried said in the filing that he bought the shares thinking they were an attractive investment and that he doesn’t currently have any plans to change or influence the control of Robinhood.

Robinhood shot to fame for its easy-to-use trading app, which brought a new generation of investors to the stock market, perhaps most famously with the meme-stock frenzy that sent GameStop soaring early last year. But crypto has become a major part of its business.

Bankman-Fried built his stake in Robinhood through a company called Emergent Fidelity Technologies, buying shares steadily from March 14. The stock’s price fell over that time, as it has generally since briefly touching USD85 shortly after its debut on the Nasdaq in the summer of 2021.

Robinhood’s stock jumped nearly 27 per cent in after-hours trading following the disclosure.

It rose five per cent earlier during the regular trading session to close at USD8.56.

The Robinhood app logo on a smartphone. PHOTO: AP