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Execs benefit from backdating of stock options

Charles Forelle and James Bandler of The Wall Street Journal analyzed grant dates and stock movements and identified several companies with wildly improbable option-grant patterns. "The analysis bolsters recent academic work suggesting that backdating was widespread, particularly from the start of the tech-stock boom in the 1990s through the Sarbanes-Oxley corporate reform act of 2002. If so, it was another way some executives enriched themselves during the boom at shareholders' expense. And because options grants are long-lived, some executives holding backdated grants from the late 1990s could still profit from them today." Read more about the methodology used. (Links to the articles on the WSJ site will be good for seven days for non-subscribers. The article is also available through Factiva or for purchase on the WSJ Web site.)

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