The AlphaMind Podcast is sponsored by The Society of Technical Analysts
March 16, 2020

#36 David Tait - Ex-Head of FX Trading at Goldman Sachs: Coping with Extreme Fear

#36 David Tait - Ex-Head of FX Trading at Goldman Sachs: Coping with Extreme Fear

In this second interview with David Tait, David talks about fear in trading and how best to cope and manage with the extreme fear which is part of terrain of trading.

When it comes to fear, and fear in trading, there are few people better qualified in the world to talk about this subject than David.  David has sat at the top table of the financial markets for near 4 decades. He was formerly head of FX and Proprietary trading at Goldman Sachs. He has also been Global Head of Macro trading at UBS and Credit Suisse, and currently is CEO of the World Gold Council. 

As well as garnishing a reputation for fearlessness when trading, David is also one of only a handful of people to have climbed mount Everest on five separate occasions, including being the first person to climb from the North side and descend from the South, alongside Sherpa legend Phurba Tashi.

David’s climbs of Mount Everest raised over £1.5 million (Over $2 million) for charities which fight child abuse and support child abuse victims. These charities are dear to David’s heart having himself been a victim of child sex abuse.

The timing of this interview is aimed to coincide with a new movie about David's life-story called “Sulphur and White” which had its royal premier last month.

This is the second of two interviews with David, in the first interview last week, David shared his story, warts and all, reflecting on his uneasy relationship with self-respect and his experiences as a victim of sexual abuse by a now-deceased relative, affected is personal and working life. 

David’s harrowing experiences are probably one of the reasons why he had a higher level of immunity to the work stresses and fears that impact many others. 

In this interview we have a deeply engaging conversation about fear, risk and trading. We explore some tips people can use to help them manage and cope with fear better and discuss both of our own experiences in this area. David also shares some insights of when he was gripped by fear, including how he coped when faced with an ice avalanche close to the top of Mount Everest, which he thought was going to kill him.  

You can find out more about David and the film ‘Sulphur and White’ by visiting