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AT&T Wireless Execs Cash Out, Employees Get Shafted

from the typical-story dept

Unfortunately, this sort of story probably comes as no surprise to most people, as similar stories are found throughout the industry. Despite all of the troubles AT&T Wireless has been having recently, leading up to their sale, the top executives at the company received large stock “performance bonuses” just a week before the company began the bidding process to sell. The bidding process, of course, pushed up the value of that stock, which has to make people wonder. This is especially questionable considering AT&T Wireless’s performance lately hasn’t exactly been the sort of performance that would make anyone deserve a performance bonus. At the same time, the sale price means that the majority of the employees at the company have discovered that their own stock options are completely worthless, and will simply be tossed out. Cingular, meanwhile, does not give out options to most employees, and sees no reason to compensate employees who have worthless options. Now, I’m never in favor of people who feel they deserve something for worthless options (options involve risk – that’s the point), but the contrast with the bonus to top executives looks questionable.

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