Apple corporation stock option backdating scandal

In addition, the emerging scandal and the ongoing investigations have already resulted in the resignation of senior officers at companies where backdating is alleged to have occurred.

Among the companies under investigation are some of the most well-known names in American business, including Apple Computer, Barnes & Noble, Home Depot and Microsoft.In recent months, another corporate scandal in American business has become the subject of increasing media scrutiny and investigations by federal prosecutors’ offices and government regulators -- the improper and undisclosed “backdating” of executive stock options.Needless to say, both shareholders and plaintiffs’ securities lawyers have taken notice and the first wave of lawsuits arising out of the backdating scandal has already hit the courts.While it was troubling enough to think that executives were exerting their influence on corporate boards of directors for personal gain through what was essentially inside information, further studies revealed an even more troubling reality -- corporations appeared to be deliberately and surreptitiously backdating stock option grants to coincide with low points in the company’s stock price.The good fortune experienced by many executives seemed to defy the law of averages, and for good reason: one has a greater chance of winning the lottery than consistently being awarded stock options when a stock is trading at or near its low point, as was the case with many corporate executives during the 1990s and the early part of this decade.

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