Signature Bank Insiders Sold $100 Million in Stock During Crypto Surge
Sales went largely unnoticed by investors due to securities rules and filing method

By Tom McGinty
and Ben Foldy

Insiders at collapsed Signature Bank SBNY -7.16%decrease; red down pointing triangle sold more than $100 million of shares in the years after the bank pivoted to attract cryptocurrency companies and became a stock-market darling, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis. Sales over the past three years by the bank’s chairman, its former chief executive officer and his successor accounted for about half of the amount sold, according to the Journal’s analysis of company filings. All three served on the board committee tasked with overseeing the bank’s risk profile over the past year…Karen Petrou, managing partner at bank-consulting firm Federal Financial Analytics, said in an interview that someone at the bank should have called for a pause and asked, “‘Do we have the right kind of brakes for this speed? Can we steer the car?” At Signature, the executives responsible for overseeing the bank’s risk were also champions of its courting of the crypto industry. That strategy focused on an internal payments platform called Signet that was used by crypto companies to manage their cash. Signature didn’t hold or lend cryptocurrency itself.