David Tait: Fearless Ex-Head of FX Trading at Goldman Sachs - Life and Trading Cannot Be Separated.

David Tait had a fearlessness which made him one of the world’s top traders. This edge helped establish him as one of the leading figures in trading in the financial markets. David success led to him becoming Global Head of FX Trading at Goldman Sachs and he went on to hold other major trading and leadership roles at investment banks Credit Suisse and UBS and was an original partner at hedge fund Bluecrest Capital.

David is now the CEO of the World Gold Council and is an Independent Member of the Bank of England’s Fixed Income, Commodity and Currency (FICC) Market Standards Board.

However, behind David’s success was a tragic and heart-breaking upbringing, which he kept secret from the world for many years. David’s incredible story was both fueled and marred by a terrible and dark past.

David's life-story has now been made into a major motion picture, directed by one of the movie industry’s leading filmmakers, and boasting an all-star cast. The film is called “Sulphur and White” and had its royal premier last week.

In this interview David shares his story, warts and all. The interview is timed to coincide with the national release of the movie in the UK this week.

This is the first of 2 interviews with David: The primary aim of the interview is to raise awareness of the movie, and to help give it publicity to support its release. And whilst this may not be the usual interview on trading and investment, it does however raise some crucially important themes about managing self as a trader, and raises questions around people abilities to separate their lives in the hugely demanding world of trading, from their personal life, and lives of people who matter in their life.

Podcast link or click on the advert below:

Some more background on David Tait:

David has been a prolific fundraiser for children’s charities. Most notably the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC). He was awarded one of the UK’s top honours (an MBE) by the Queen in 2010 for his services to the charity. David has climbed Mount Everest on five separate occasion to raise money for charity, a feat only achieved by a handful of people. In 2007 he set a world first by performing the very first North-South traverse of Everest. His charity raising efforts have to date raised over £1.5million ($2million) for the NSPCC and ChildLine. His web page can be viewed here.

The Movie - Sulphur and White 

All profits from the movie #sulphurandwhite, will be going to the NSPCC. - You can see the Trailer for 'Sulphur and White' below. You can also donate to the NSPCC on the Sulphur and White web page https://sulphurandwhite

I was fortunate to see the movie on its premiere. It was an incredibly powerful and disturbing movie. Beuatifully acted by Mark Stanley and Emily Beecham, who made the main characters of the film come to life.

Rather than write my own review, I have decided to post below the review by Zoe Van de Voorde from  OC Movie Reviews, who awareded the film 4 stars.

4 Star Review from OC Movie Reviews. 

It doesn’t happen often that I’m shook up by the movie I have just watched. As I came out of the theatre, I needed a moment to breathe in deeply and take it all in. I don’t usually watch movies like this, but stories like this do deserve to be told.

Sulphur and White is based on the true story of David Tait, portrayed beautifully by Mark Stanley (“Hellboy”, “Run”). He suffered sexual abuse during his childhood in Johannesburg, and this has haunted him through his adulthood. When he meets Vanessa, played by Emily Beecham (“Berlin, I Love You”, “The Calling”), he has to find the strength to overcome his inner demons.

Julian Jarrold (“Kinky Boots”, “Becoming Jane”) did a masterful job at directing the movie. It starts out slow, but this makes the abuse so much more severe. You can see the build-up, and how this little boy tries his best to deal with everything. I don’t think I’ll ever look at flickering lights again.

This is a character-driven movie, and it has kept me on the edge of my seat. I don’t think I’ve been this tense in a movie theatre in a long time. Julian Jarrold knows when to pull his audience in and don’t let go.

The cast does a brilliant job at portraying their characters. I’ll start with Hugo Stone, who plays David at the age of 10. This is his first outing on the screen, and his performance blew me away. He’s one to watch.

Anson Boon (“1917”, “Crawl”) plays David as a 15 year old, and he also was a huge surprise. I believed him, that I did. All of the adults are brilliant. Mark Stanley’s performance as the adult David Tait had me in tears near the end of the movie. Dougray Scott (“Hitman”, “MI2”) is a terrifying presence in the house as Donald Tait, the patriarch.

There were a lot of scenes that touched a nerve, but one scene in particular struck me as incredibly powerful. David is introducing his new girlfriend Vanessa to his estranged father. Before she arrives, his father asks him about his first family. David says he never got too much involved with them. He says “Leaving them alone. Best thing for them really.”

I think this is very telling about how he sees himself. He’s so afraid of becoming his dad, he just pushes everybody away once the chance arises. It’s utterly heartbreaking. His father tells him “You’re just me in a better suit.”. I don’t think he could’ve said anything more hurtful at that point. After all, there are many different kinds of abuse.

I recommend you go and see this film. It’s the story of a man trying to better himself. He has to fall incredibly low before he can, but he manages it. It’s a true story, about a true hero, who you should all hear about. Let’s all be better than our demons.

The AlphaMind Podcast 

The AlphaMind podcast is co-hosted by Steven Goldstein and Mark Randall, market veterans with over seven decades between them in the financial markets.

The podcast holds fascinating conversations with people from the world of financial markets.

In the interviews they delve into the lives and stories of extraordinary guests whose experiences provide a fresh and powerful lens through which to understand the mental, emotional, psychological and behavioural challenges people face when encountering risk and uncertainty in financial markets.

Guests come from a range of backgrounds, including experienced and veteran traders and investment professionals, analysts, psychologists, coaches, authors and experts in fields related to trading, financial markets and risk.

Through these powerful, informative and insightful conversations, they seek to help people develop, cultivate and grow optimal mindsets for better performance and more effective and productive behaviour when engaged in risk taking activities.

To find out more visit the podcast website and the AlphaMind website.  

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