Steve Jobs Allegedly Steals $455,625,000 Worth of Apple Shares in 2001
In one of the saddest cases of rank CEO theft, greed and lying I have ever seen Apple computer announced yesterday Steve Jobs stole 7.5 million shares from the company and later lied by altering records to show Apple’s Board approved the 7.5 million option grant.
An option grant of 7.5 million without Board approval is theft. Jobs does not run or own Apple, its Board and the public does, and those records would not have been falsified had they not feared the truth of theft seeing the light of day.
[An option is a gift of company shares at a pre-determined price, say $20 a share. If two years later the price is $40 the owner exercises the option and pockets the difference, $20 a share.]
It gets much worse. At the end 2000 Jobs was given an option grant of twenty…million…shares at $43.59. 20 million shares! Even with just a potential $10 gain that’s $200 million dollars. Can someone explain to me how anyone would need $200 million in this world?
But just a year later Apple’s stock was at $18.30, a 41% drop. For an option holder the market share value is flipped in reference—he or she wants the price low to gain as much out of the market price as possible. Drooling at all that money just missed by a matter of months, Apple and Jobs back-dated Jobs’ options—they lied about the date for a lower option price so Jobs could squeeze more fortune from twenty…million…shares.
In a ridiculous rank lie, Apple investigated and said Jobs knew of the back-dating but wasn’t aware of the accounting implications. It’s such horseshit one wonders how anyone could say it with a straight face—there is only one reason to back-date options, to steal money from the market, and Jobs damn well knew it. A CEO isn’t aware of “accounting implications” that nets him a great amount of money? Good lord.
Incredibly, it still wasn’t enough for Steve. That 41% drop was just sitting there, so tantalizing in its vast wealth. So just 11.5 months later Jobs got another option grant, this time 7.5 million shares. Not even counting the twenty…million…shares Jobs was granted before, with today’s share price at $79.05 that 7.5 million grant at $18.30 is today worth $455,625,000. A cool $450 million, Steve just had to have it after being in the poor house after an option grant of twenty…million…shares.
Now word comes out Jobs never got Board approval for those amazing 7.5 million shares. What does that precisely mean? Again, Jobs stole them, plain and simple. Somehow he got people inside the company to finagle that 7.5 million grant without the Board approving it. Jobs reports to the Board of Apple, he does not own or run that company.
CEO’s and Apple behave like this for two reasons: one, the $450 million payout comes from suckers in the stock market, lied to and fooled that Apple is a reputable company. The money isn’t earned in the traditional sense, there’s never any screaming that $450 million were taken out of cash revenues of the company. Two, until very recently under American accounting rules that $450 million wasn’t even expensed as a cost!
Normally $450 million in CEO compensation would be subtracted from Apple’s profit statement at the end of the year, but since they were options, incredibly, $450 million would never appear on the books as the compensation payout it is. Free money from the market, free money in accounting. A setup like that was irresistible to thousands of CEO’s who abused it terribly, netting vast fortunes for literally nothing.
Last year expensing options finally was put in place, but yesterday the SEC (they set options and accounting rules) reversed itself right before Christmas so companies would find it very, very easy to yet again cheat and lie about how they were showering their CEO’s with vast fortunes. With Republicans in charge this place is set up for the very rich, that’s all they care about, while the rest of us and the country can go to hell.
What now, Steve Jobs? Are you going to sit there while your company yet again whitewashes your lying greed? A statement has been put forth that the 7.5 million grant will never be exercised, how very, very noble of you after the mountain of greedy cash hauled in from a previous grant of twenty…million…shares. What in the hell are the sycophants who work for you going to say this time? That records were falsified but you were unaware altering records to hide theft was wrong?
Every Apple employee is soon to show up work knowing their CEO is a lying crook with an infinite reservoir of greed. Is that your opinion of CEO leadership? Well, is it?
It’s time to outlaw options altogether. They’ve been horribly abused in a rank dance of denial and theft for years while investors and little people get screwed. Even when some sort of sane accounting is put in place the Republican-appointed SEC enables more theft yet again, it’s time to finally put an end to lying insanity of it all. This country was not set up for the sole purpose of making CEO’s filthy rich, even though Jobs and the Republicans are totally unaware of it.