Will substantial evidence emerge by 2025 that the FTX Future Fund team had strong suspicions of fraudulent activities at FTX before November 2022?
Dec 31

The FTX Future Fund team had five members: Nick Beckstead, Leopold Aschenbrenner, Avital Balwit, William MacAskill and Ketan Ramakrishnan. The question will resolve positively if substantial evidence emerges before start of year 2025 that at least one of these people subjectively placed the odds of substantial fraud at FTX or Alameda Research above 25% at any time before start of month November 2022. The question will resolve negatively otherwise.

Resolution is necessarily somewhat subjective here, so I'll try to give some concrete examples about what would or would not suffice for this question to resolve positively. You can request further clarifications in the comments as you please.

For the question to resolve positively, it's not required that these people expected something of the scale or severity of what actually happened: any suspicion that FTX was deploying customer assets in risky investments via Alameda despite their public commitment to not do so would suffice to resolve this market positively, as one example.

Suspicions that lack concrete details can be sufficient. For instance, if chat logs between two members of the Future Fund team were discovered that showed them discussing the possibility of fraud at FTX in a way that put serious credence on it, despite not having any specific details about the nature of the fraud, this question would resolve positively. If explicit probabilities are not directly specified in the available evidence, then I will rely on my best judgment to estimate some implied probability based on how seriously the possibility of fraud is being treated in the available evidence.

Note that positive resolution requires suspicion of fraud. If we discovered evidence that the Future Fund team had moral reservations about using a cryptocurrency exchange to fund EA causes, but had no actual suspicions of fraud, this would not be sufficient by itself to resolve this question positively.

If I believe that the members of the Future Fund team suspected fraudulent activities at FTX, but this belief is not supported by any material evidence accessible to the traders on this market, this question will resolve negatively despite my personal beliefs. The question is not about what I will think but about what concrete evidence will be discovered.

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bought Ṁ300 of NO

Effective Ventures just published an update that includes a paragraph relevant to this question (note that Future Fund members MacAskill and Beckstead were trustees of EV):

> Also related to FTX, in September we completed an independent investigation about the relationship between FTX and EV. The investigation, commissioned from the law firm Mintz, included dozens of interviews as well as reviews of tens of thousands of messages and documents. Mintz found no evidence that anyone at EV (including employees, leaders of EV-sponsored projects, and trustees) was aware of the criminal fraud of which Sam Bankman-Fried has now been convicted.


@KatjaGrace No update on the lawsuit?

predicts NO

@NicoDelon not much, because a) I know Nick pretty well, b) skimming, the argument is "Sam asked for some ineffective altruism, which everyone should have known means fraud?" Don't companies do that all the time? (But also I generally make large bets pretty willy-nilly, based on my gut sense, which varies somewhat randomly anyway, so my guess one day and the next varies by evidential update + random variation. I agree it is some positive evidence.)

predicts YES

@KatjaGrace Thanks, that’s helpful, and I appreciate your candor.

predicts YES


I don't really understand this, but I think it recounts a law suit alleging that Nick Beckstead knew about other, more minor fraudulent activity involving FTX, separate from the big stuff that brought them down. Which would resolve this 'yes' if true, though the forum poster seems skeptical that it is true.

predicts YES

@DavidMathers Not a great look either way.

predicts YES

@DavidMathers Worth noting that Beckstead is named among those being warned repeatedly about SBF in the famous Time article.

predicts YES

@DavidMathers I think the market creator wrote some comments that would not resolve this to yes, but not sure, and I'm too lazy to look it up right now

predicts YES

@DavidMathers actually nevermind, I confused this market with another. I think you're right.

predicts YES

Time to buy YES on the cheap for anyone who believes the situation is likely to be murkier.

bought Ṁ0 of NO

Wow @KatjaGrace thats quite the confidence

FTX Future Fund team, oh so sly,
Did they suspect fraud, or was it a lie?
By 2025, will we see the light,
Or will they continue to hide out of sight?

predicts YES
bought Ṁ0 of NO

Betting yes. I think it's very unlikely that the Future Fund team knew anything about customer assets being used for investments, but the resolution criteria of this market seem pretty broad, so it seems plausible that it'll resolve positively even if there was no suspicion of defrauding customers.

bought Ṁ3,000 of NO

@JonasVollmer Doesn't it explicitly require material evidence of suspicion of fraud? (contrary to "it seems plausible that it'll resolve positively even if there was no suspicion of defrauding customers")

predicts YES

@KatjaGrace Yeah but I think it's possible that the Future Fund had suspicion of fraud other than defrauding customers, or fraud in-general rather than defrauding customers.

predicts NO

@JonasVollmer Ah got it, curious why that seems much more likely than suspicion of defrauding of customers

predicts YES

- Source 1
- Source 2
I don't know though, maybe I'm being inconsistent, or not adjusting sufficiently for it being unlikely that there would be material evidence of suspicion.

predicts NO

@JonasVollmer Weirdly I can't log in to see source 1, and also it's a long article—is the main evidence briefly summarizable?

predicts YES
predicts YES

@KatjaGrace it seems slightly strange that you would bet the equivalent of $610 on these markets, yet you seem reluctant to engage with the most substantive piece of evidence against your position?

predicts NO

@berealistic I did actually hear the contents of source 1 before, I mistakenly thought it was something I didn't know about.

But I wouldn't actually put it past me at all in general to bet $610 on something then not be into investigating the most relevant evidence that comes out carefully.

predicts YES

@Gigacasting That is an op-ed that seems based solely on the Time article w/o any additional investigation. Not sure how it moves the needle.