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Shares of Silvergate Capital sank 42.7% on Thursday after the crypto-focused bank released preliminary fourth-quarter results that showed massive customer withdrawals.

Total deposits from digital asset customers declined to $3.8 billion from $11.9 billion at the end of the third quarter, a decline of roughly 68%. The withdrawals came as crypto exchange FTX, a Silvergate customer, collapsed in scandal, raising questions about the stability of the digital asset industry. Silvergate said there was a “crisis of confidence across the ecosystem.”

At the end of December, $150 million of the bank’s deposits were held by customers who had filed for bankruptcy protection, Silvergate said.

Options Action: Silvergate shares plunge

In order to raise cash during this period, Silvergate sold $5.2 billion of debt securities, creating a loss on sale of $718 million. It reported $4.6 billion in total cash and cash equivalents held at the end of December.

“In response to the rapid changes in the digital asset industry during the fourth quarter, we took commensurate steps to ensure that we were maintaining cash liquidity in order to satisfy potential deposit outflows, and we currently maintain a cash position in excess of our digital asset related deposits,” CEO Alan Lane said in a statement.

Silvergate also announced that it is laying off 200 employers, or about 40% of its workforce, and exited its mortgage warehouse lending business.

Thursday’s stock move erased a big rally for Silvergate on Wednesday, when shares gained 27%.

Silvergate, which went public in 2019, saw its stock rise as high as $222 per share in November 2021, the same month as the peak price in Bitcoin. Silvergate shares ended 2022 at $17.40, more than 90% off their all-time high.

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By NFO

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