Apple CEO Tim Cook is the highest-paid CEO in the US, according to a New York Times report that suggests that he earned about $378 million in 2011. The report goes on to claim that this means Cook earned $1 million a day, roughly $42,000 an hour. Or $700 a minute. Or $12 a second.

Of course the claims are far from true. The $378 million figure is based on a one-time stock award of $376.2 million, which is awarded to Cook only if he stays at the company for 10 years. As Apple's 2012 proxy statement filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission explains: Cook's compensation should be viewed "over the 10-year vesting period and not solely as compensation for 2011." (More below) 

Fortune dismisses the New York Times report, pointing out that: “Cook doesn't make anywhere near $1 million a day”.

Cook's annual salary for 2011 was $900,000, which is considerably less than the median total compensation of $14.4 million for US CEOs last year, as reported by the Times in the same article.


Other perks and bonuses bring Cook’s sum up to $1.8 million for the 12-months.

If you spread the $376.2 million worth of shares (at the value on the day they were granted) over 10 years, you get $103,000 a day, explains Fortune. “That's a ton of money, but it's not the $1 million dollars a day.”

Oracle Corp’s Larry Ellison made $77.6 million last year and Apple retail chief Ron Johnson, made $53.3 million in his new role at US retailer JC Penney.