What is backdating options

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Just so, which midlevel investigator at the Securities and Exchange Commission would have the temerity to recommend to Chairman Christopher Cox that the agency haul the most successful Silicon Valley entrepreneur into court?Which junior federal prosecutor will recommend indicting the guy who smashed the PC monopoly?We're talking top executives at big-name companies like Apple, Altera, Broadcom, Brocade, Cirrus Logic, Comverse, KLA-Tencor, Maxim, Mc Afee, Rambus, Sanmina-SCI, Take Two, Trident, Verisign, and Vitesse. That's serious fallout considering that options backdating is legit as long as the company reports it and accounts for it accurately.You see, if you backdate stock options to a date when the price of the stock was lower, then the options are "in-the-money" when granted.The allegations of illicit sex, drugs, and rock and roll reminded me of the 60s ... Sure, Broadcom had to take a .2 billion charge to fix the accounting mess left by the company's former executives.But how does that relate to hiring prostitutes and drugging customers without their knowledge?And he never cashed in those options because they were replaced in 2003 by a grant of restricted stock.

This apparently violates a whole bunch of SEC rules.

As Jack Shafer noted in 2005, even the press loves Jobs.

Nobody—no board member, or analyst, or hedge-fund manager, or columnist—will step up to say that Jobs should go.

Still, given that (a) backdating helps make earnings look better than they are; and (b) Jobs is a huge shareholder of Apple (10.12 million shares, as of last April), how could he not benefit from this behavior? Jobs recommended some backdating dates for other employees.

It turns out that Jobs did, indeed, receive backdated options—just not at his own direction. 18, 2001, when the stock stood at .01, the company gave Jobs a monster 7.5-million-share options grant dated Oct. By doing so, the company gave Jobs million in compensation for which it did not account properly. It also pretended the options grant was approved at a special board meeting, when no such meeting occurred. He received a massive grant that was approved at a phantom board meeting, though he didn't know about the phony meeting.

Consumers adore him for liberating them from the tyranny of expensive CDs and crappy radio.

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