It looks Apple’s stock options backdating scandal might finally be over, with CEO Steve Jobs and other executive having agreed to a $14 million settlement pending the court’s final approval on October 31. The settlement comes close to two years after the company took an $84 million charge for improperly booked stock options.
Apple has also agreed to reform parts of its options plan, but in the end all of this basically comes to the $14 million being paid by Apple’s liability insurer back to the company itself – not the shareholders –given that this was a “derivative” lawsuit that sought compensation on behalf of the company. Apple, however, must pay around $8.5 million in plaintiffs' attorneys' fees and $350,000 in expenses. While shareholders do not financially benefit from the suit, they benefit to some extent by restoring Apple’s good name and forcing changes that otherwise might not have happened inside the firm.