Most Americans are retired by the age of 80, with both feet planted squarely on terra firma.
Bill Reaves, who turned 80 at the end of February, not only comes into the office every day, but spends most summer weekends at sea, racing his sailboat, the Otro Mundo.
"It means `other world,' and it really is another world out there," Mr. Reaves said.
When ashore, Mr. Reaves is president, chief investment officer, analyst and portfolio manager of W.H. Reaves & Co., Jersey City, N.J., which manages about $1 billion in utility stocks, mainly for institutional defined benefit plan clients.
Mr. Reaves started sailing when he was 40. He is joined by a crew of six "strong, agile young people who can make a boat do pretty much anything. If you race enough you'll pick up a few trophies, but honestly, I'm very enthusiastic but not very good."
Mr. Reaves said sailing is a perfect antidote to the "thrills and chills of investment management. Sometimes you just have to grit your teeth and endure. Sailing is one of the few activities that keeps your attention riveted to what you're doing." While racing, he said, there's no time to think about anything else.
Mr. Reaves remains focused on utility stocks, although the rest of his team is branching out into a wider universe of value stocks through the conversion in January of the $227 million Strong American Utilities Fund into the Strong Dividend Income Fund. W.H. Reaves & Co. has subadvised the fund for Strong Capital Management, Menomonee Falls, Wis., for eight years.
The large-cap value strategy developed for the mutual fund likely will be offered to institutional investors at some point, but Mr. Reaves said: "I don't think I'm going to have much to do with the value stocks. What I really know are the utilities. I think I'll concentrate on those."