SPECIAL REPORT: EXECUTIVE PAY : Easy Come, Easy Go

Stock options can turn executives into instant millionaires. But sometimes those riches are on paper only, as former Apple Computer Inc. President Robert L. Puette discovered last year. Apple's 1993 proxy statement listed Puette's total compensation as $7.7 million, which would have made him the fourth-highest paid executive at California's 100 biggest publicly held companies. But the bulk of the package--$7.2 million--was in stock options. And Puette says those options went unexercised when he left Apple in October.

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