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Microsoft’s Top Executives Get A Paycut

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Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) just completed the worst fiscal year in its history, with revenue down three percent; the first decline in sales in its history. And its executives did not get off easy. All of Microsoft’s top executives had their direct compensation packages — which include base salary, cash incentive payments, and stock awards — slashed. CEO Steve Ballmer’s total compensation dropped to $1.265 million from $1.34 million; Entertainment and Devices President Robbie Bach made $6.2 million, compared to $8.3 million the year before; CFO Chris Liddell got $3.5 million, compared to $4.8 million a year earlier; COO Kevin Turner made $5.4 million, versus $8.6 million; and Business Division president Stephen Elop made $4.8 million, up from $4 million a year earlier (although that was still down on an annualized basis).

The reasoning, in all cases, according to an SEC filing: “Our named executive officers were each reviewed on their performance on a wide range of measures, which included for the business division leaders the financial performance of the business or organization they led. In each case, financial results were less than expected due to the impact of worldwide economic conditions on our business. As a result, the Incentive Plan awards to our named executive officers for fiscal year 2009 were below both the target level for their awards and their actual fiscal year 2008 incentive compensation awards.”

No word on the compensation of online division president Qi Lu, the Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) veteran who joined Microsoft mid-year.

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