In this week’s Money Diaries, a forex trader earning up to £250,000 a year tracks his spending and is shocked to learn how much he’s splurged on the essentials
Name: Patrick Reid
Occupation: FX trader and mentor
Yearly income: Between £190,000 and £250,000
For someone who teaches people how to navigate the currency market, you would have thought I’d be on top of my spending.
Before the challenge I said to myself “I got this. I’m gonna bring my A-game to the table.” My problem areas today are bespoke suits and eating out. Back when I was early in my career it was fast cars and weekends in Monaco. The partying calmed down and today I can honestly say I’m much more sensible with my money. Now I’m all grown up, what could possibly go wrong?
I woke up at 5.45am and checked the markets, made myself a clear juice of apple, carrot, ginger and celery along with a flat white. This didn’t cost me much but the initial investment was £250 and £900 for the coffee machine (which reminded me of my third problem area, which is Amazon. Oops). Later I met a friend for lunch who used to run a Mauritius bank. We wanted to discuss a pitch I have next week so we we headed off to my favourite scrummy Indian place – Dishoom in Kings Cross.
I paid, which I love to do for my friends, and the bill came to £79. In the afternoon I headed back home and ordered more Space NK products for Christmas, totting up £199 (maybe I’ve found a fourth problem area – this exercise is great!).
I tend not to go out for late dinners as it upsets my morning work routine and Monday is no different. I headed back and had a light dinner at home with an early night.
In the morning my usual routine happened but I also gave a pitch on Zoom so stayed at home. I then went to my spin class at David Lloyd gym (£160 a month) and bought a caesar salad on the way back, which was £4.50
I went out in the evening with clients to E&O – my favourite Notting Hill fusion place – and spent £225 on the delicious meal.
Today I thought about my money diary quite a lot so I promised myself I would avoid shopping online (apart from essentials) which would help me not spent a lot (by the plain fact i would have to walk into a physical shop to part with my cash).
I picked up my bespoke suit and shirt from Threadgold off Regent Street, paying off the final bill of £2,250, then went to Whole Foods in Kensington for a healthy takeaway lunch, which cost £15.50.
One thing I do every week is catch up with old friends on a Wednesday night. That used to get expensive but now we cut out the booze and go large on the pudding. We all went to Nando’s for some early dinner at 6pm and I came home £8.50 lighter.
I had a big English breakfast at The Ned (they call it a half English but believe me it IS enough), which is my excuse because I needed to get myself together for an ITV News interview on Friday.
I came back and ordered some cameras and gadgets from Amazon for webinars and conferencing. A cool £95.99.
The interview got pushed back to Monday – damn! – so I drowned my sorrows at Pret and bought a Swedish meatball wrap, coffee and a few extras. £8.50 for breakfast.
Extra coffees and treats made it another £15. I then went home and literally sat on my hands as to avoid shopping online. Mr Porter is bad!
Ordered my Ocado food shopping for Christmas – £674.90 – then went to my regular breakfast meeting with friends at my all-time favourite brunch bar in Bayswater called Brekky And Flame. Spent £9.80.
Went back for a siesta and woke up with cheese on toast. Oh how the naughty things just taste soooo good!
Met my old mates from university and went to Bryon Burger at Westfields then watched Ghostbusters at Vue. Spent £25 – not a bad day.
Total spending this week:£4915.79
To say I am shocked is an understatement. On the one hand I don’t spend as much on partying, but I do splash out on food and skin products. I treat myself (along with friends) because I like to think I’m worth it, but I do feel guilty and want to cut back.
The bottom line is I have a stressful job and sometimes I need a release. My vices are no longer shots and Dom Perignon – more chocolate, moisturisers and Saville Row!
Do you fancy tracking your spending for the Mirror’s Money Diaries? Get in touch with [email protected]