Salem Abraham

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Salem Abraham
Born Salem Andrew Abraham
1966 (age 51–52)
Canadian, Texas, U.S.
Alma mater University of Notre Dame
Occupation Investor, hedge fund manager, and philanthropist
Known for Founding Abraham Trading Company
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Ruth Ann Dennis (m. 1988)
Children 8
Parent(s) Malouf Abraham, Jr. & Therese Browne Abraham
Relatives Malouf Abraham, Sr. (grandfather)
Tom Abraham (great-uncle)
Nahim Abraham (great-grandfather)
The Abraham Trading Company is based in the Moody Building, a former hotel in Canadian, Texas.

Salem Andrew Abraham (born 1966) is an American investor, hedge fund manager, and philanthropist. He is the president and founder of Abraham Trading Company, a futures investment firm based in Canadian, Texas.

Early life and education[edit]

A member of a fourth-generation Irish-Lebanese Hemphill County family, Abraham is the second of three sons born to the retired physician, Malouf Abraham, Jr., and Therese Browne Abraham, a native of Mount Airy, North Carolina. Abraham's mother served as mayor of Canadian from 1981 to 1991. His grandfather, Malouf Abraham, Sr., known as "Oofie" Abraham, served as mayor from 1953 to 1957. Oofie was also an oil and natural gas entrepreneur and served as a Republican member of the Texas House of Representatives from 1967 to 1971.[1] He has two brothers, Eddie (born 1965) and Jason (born 1969), who are engaged in cattle and horse ranching in Hemphill County.

Abraham's great-grandfather, Nahim Abraham, and his great-uncle, Tom Abraham (1910-2007), were merchants and community builders of Canadian. Nahim immigrated to the US from Lebanon and arrived in Canadian in 1913. Upon arriving, he launched The Fair Store, a department store known regionally for its high-quality dry goods merchandise, particularly clothing.[2] After Nahim's retirement in 1955, Tom Abraham and his wife, Helen Ferguson Abraham, became the owners of the store.[3]

Salem Abraham graduated in 1984 from Canadian High School and from the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana in 1987.[4] It was at the end of college that he developed an interest in investments. In the spring of 1987, Abraham met Jerry Parker, the founder of the Chesapeake Capital Corporation hedge fund in Richmond, Virginia. Parker briefly spoke with him about his profession and his trading philosophy. At that time, Abraham intended to return to Canadian to marry his high school sweetheart, Ruth Ann Dennis. After hearing about Parker's work, he realized that an investment firm would combine his interest of business and math and could also successfully operate out of a small town like Canadian.

Abraham first met Ruth Ann Abraham (formerly Ruth Ann Dennis) in middle school, and the two began dating in high school. After graduating in 1987, Abraham returned to Canadian and married Ruth Ann on August 6, 1988. She graduated from West Texas A&M with a teaching degree in 1990. They have eight children–5 girls and 3 boys. Their children[5] are the fifth generation of Abrahams in Hemphill County.

The Abrahams live near the center of town in a home that was once the home of Abrahm's great-grandparents, Nahim and Alia Abraham. Before his great-grandparents acquired the home, it served as a girls' dormitory.

Political Activities[edit]

Like Malouf Abraham, Sr., Abraham is a Republican and has donated to the party. In recent years, Salem Abraham has been a donor to U.S. Senator John Cornyn and his home congressman, U.S. Representative, Mac Thornberry of Texas's 13th congressional district. He contributed to John McCain in the 2008 presidential election. He and family members also gave to former State Senator Florence Shapiro of Plano, who earlier considered but then declined to run for the U.S. Senate from Texas later vacated by Kay Bailey Hutchison.[6]

Salem Abraham began service in 2001 as a trustee of the Canadian Independent School District and became the board president in 2007. In 2008, the Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives Tom Craddick of Midland[7] appointed Abraham, along with the since departing State Representative Diane Porter Patrick of Arlington, to the Public School Accountability Task Force, a group established to oversee a new educational accountability system for public education. Abraham also served on the legislative committee for the Texas Association of School Boards.[8][9]

In the 2012 Republican runoff election for state representative from District 88 to fill the seat vacated by Warren Chisum of Pampa, Abraham supported former school board colleague Ken King,[10] an oil and gas businessman from Canadian, who unseated the conservative Jim Landtroop of Plainview in Hale County.[11]

Abraham Trading Company[edit]

Abraham Trading Company was launched in January 1988. It is based in Canadian, described in 2012 by Barron's as "a far piece from almost anywhere that might be thought of as a financial center, an unlikely spot for a managed-futures hedge fund that has been racking up positive returns for twenty-four years."[12] Salem Abraham defines his primary objective as providing "investors long-term capital appreciation with very low correlation to traditional investments."[13]

Abraham established an office in the former Moody Hotel, which he purchased from his grandfather in 1994. The 12,000 square-foot ATC office is located on the second floor of the converted turn-of-the-century Moody Hotel. Below the office is the Cattle Exchange Steakhouse. Since 1988, the company[14] has produced an average annual rate of return 16.27%.[15] The Abraham Trading investment model tracks trends in seventy-two global futures markets. Slightly more than half of the investments are in commodity futures: energy, metals, grains, meats, and soft commodities, including orange juice, milk, sugar, cocoa, and cotton. The remaining markets include currencies, interest rates, and global stock indexes.[16]

The Palace Theater in downtown Canadian, Texas, owned by Salem and Ruth Ann Abraham, underwent a $1 million renovation in 1998.

A 2003 article in The New York Times noted that "it would be hard to find a financial firm in the United States as removed from Wall Street, geographically and culturally, as the Abraham Trading Company. Housed in the same building where his grandfather, Malouf Abraham, once chewed the fat with local politicians and ranchers while building a sizable land-speculation business, the company has evolved into one of the nation's most unusual trading operations."[14]

In 2004, Salem Abraham L.L.C became a principle entity of Abraham Trading company.[17]

In November of 2008, oil and natural gas businessman T. Boone Pickens remarked, "He's the only money manager who's made me any money this year. And that includes myself." Abraham and Pickens are business partners occasionally. Pickens' ranch is in Roberts County, which is near Canadian. In 2008, Pickens, Abraham, and Abraham's wife, Ruth Ann, established the Pickens-Abraham Foundation, an independent foundation that assists local high school graduates with college education expenses and provides financial support to local schools and charitable organizations.[18]

Abraham is registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and is a member of the National Futures Association. He is also a past member of the Chicago Board of Trade and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. He has appeared in articles by Bloomberg Business News, Absolute Return, Barron's, the New York Times, and Michael Covel books, The Complete Turtle Trader and Trend Following.[13]

Abraham is also active in real estate as well as underground water rights and energy. In addition to the Moody Hotel building, Abraham owns nine buildings along Main Street in Canadian, including the Palace Theater, where he and Ruth Ann once went on dates. They spent $1 million restoring the structure in 1998.[19] Abraham also owns Sweet Ruthie's River Ranch on the outskirts of Canadian.[citation needed]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Malouf Abraham, Oil & Gas". Amarillo Globe Times, reproduced on River Valley Pioneer Museum website. May 19, 2000. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  2. ^ H. Allen Anderson. "Abraham, Nahim". Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  3. ^ "Tom Abraham, Merchant". River Valley Pioneer Museum. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Business & Technology | In Texas, a king of the Asian commodities market | Seattle Times Newspaper". old.seattletimes.com. Retrieved 2016-06-06. 
  5. ^ "Slice of Life: A series by Katy McGarr: Ruth Ann Abraham", Canadian Record, May 25, 2006, p. 22
  6. ^ "CANADIAN, Texas (TX) Political Contributions by Individuals". city-data.com. Retrieved September 24, 2014. 
  7. ^ Coincidentally, Tom Craddick's first term in the House from 1969 to 1971, when he was twenty-five, coincided with the second and final term of Malouf Abraham, Sr., before he devoted full-time to oil and natural gas pursuits.
  8. ^ "Craddick announces his appointments to the Public School Accountability Task Force". house.state.tx.us. January 22, 2008. Retrieved September 22, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Craddick appoints Salem Abraham to Public School Accountability Task Force", Canadian Record, January 24, 2008, p. 12
  10. ^ "Salem Abraham v. Daniel Greer and Fix The Facts Foundation d/b/a AgendaWise: Appeal from 31st District Court of Hemphill County". law.justia.com. July 25, 2014. Retrieved September 23, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Race for Chisum's House Seat Heating Up, August 24, 2011". legislativequeery.com. Retrieved April 25, 2013. [permanent dead link]
  12. ^ Nancy F. Smith (May 26, 2012). "In Unfamiliar Territory: How managed-futures trader Salem Abraham plans to end his recent losing streak. Going long British gilts, German bunds, and canola". Barron's. Retrieved September 22, 2014. 
  13. ^ a b "Abraham Trading Company". abrahamtrading.com. Retrieved September 22, 2014. 
  14. ^ a b Simon Romero (December 28, 2013). "A Homespun Hedge Fund, Tucked Away in Texas". Retrieved September 22, 2014. 
  15. ^ Altegris. "Abraham Trading Company", "Altegris", La Jolla, 5 August 2016. Retrieved on 19 August 2016.
  16. ^ Romero, Simon (2003-12-28). "A Homespun Hedge Fund, Tucked Away in Texas". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2018-01-05. 
  17. ^ "Prospectus Supplement". www.sec.gov. Retrieved 2018-01-05. 
  18. ^ The Pickens–Abraham Foundation. "$1M award brings support for Roberts, Hemphill county youth", "amarillo.com", Amarillo, 29 July 2016. Retrieved on 19 August 2016.
  19. ^ Kambiz Foroohar (February 2, 2009). "Pickens Has Nothing on Salem Abraham in Battle of Texas Returns". Bloomberg News. Retrieved September 22, 2014.