Apple Inc. (AAPL) Peter Oppenheimer Top CFO Earner In Fiscal 2012

Apple Inc. (AAPL) Peter Oppenheimer Top CFO Earner In Fiscal 2012
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Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s Chief Financial Officer Peter Oppenheimer was the highest paid among all CFO’s in 2012.

Apple Inc. (AAPL) Peter Oppenheimer Top CFO Earner In Fiscal 2012

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Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s CFO earned the most in fiscal 2012. He earned $68.6 million package that dwarfed the $4.17 million paid to Chief Executive Officer Tom Cook, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

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Oracle Corporation (NASDAQ:ORCL) CFO Safra Catz was second at $51.7 million, making her the highest-paid female leader, while Patrick Pichette at Google was No. 3, with $38.7 million.

According to Adam Satariano and Brian Womack reporting for Bloomberg News, five of the ten best-paid finance chiefs last year work in the technology industry, as executives at companies from Apple Inc. to Google Inc. were rewarded for increasing profit, amassing cash and minimizing taxes.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s CFO Oppenheimer’s pay was made up almost entirely of stock grants issued to retain top lieutenants after co-founder Steve Jobs died.

Oppenheimer’s pay was the fifth-highest among all S &P 500 executives, including CEO’s.

Under Oppenheimer’s financial stewardship, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) enriched its cash holdings far in excess of many companies’ yearly earnings. His strategy of keeping two-thirds of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s holdings outside the United States saved Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) billions in corporate tax payments.

Recently Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) CFO has devised a unique bond offering strategy. This will facilitate Apple to avoid $9.2 billion in taxes by borrowing against its cash position instead of repatriating its overseas holdings.

The technology companies also have lower tax rates. While the average effective tax rate last year for S&P 500 companies stood at 41 percent, the nine technology companies’ average stood at 30 percent. Interestingly, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s effective tax rate was 25.2 percent in fiscal 2012.

Some technology CFO’s are minimizing taxes by recording fewer profits in the U.S., which has a 35 percent corporate tax rate, and more in overseas tax havens, where levies are lower or nonexistent. Many companies are able to accomplish this by moving earnings from intellectual property such as patents across international borders.

According to the Bloomberg’s reporters, the CFO’s are a key part of the organization and hence they are paid accordingly.

However some feel while the highest-paid technology CFO’s may have benefited from lower tax rates, their compensation was also influenced by such yardsticks as revenue growth and earnings expansion. At Google, sales increased 32 percent to $50.2 billion last year while Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) reported net income that rose 61 percent to $41.7 billion during its fiscal year 2012.

Oppenheimer assumed the CFO role in 2004, having previously served as corporate controller and vice president and worldwide sales controller.

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