Friday, May 10, 2002


"E*Trade Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Christos Cotsakos Thursday received a Ph.D. in economics from the University of London. Angry investors say he should go back there for a lesson in corporate governance."

"Mr. Cotsakos last week became the highest-paid chief executive in the brokerage business, with a pay package valued at about $80 million, including a $15 million loan that has been forgiven, $15 million in company-paid taxes on the loan, $29 million in restricted stock and 1.87 million stock options."

"Mr. Cotsakos's pay is just the richest of the many goodies he gets at E*Trade. The online trading and discount brokerage firm also pays for security systems for his house and plane as well as his tuition and flights to London to finish that Ph.D."

-- From today's Wall Street Journal

It almost goes without saying that E*Trade is not making money. So, here's the deal: $80 million pay/perk package for Mr. Cotsakos, negative earnings and a collapsing share price for investors. How do you spell s-h-o-r-t?

Credit Where Credit Is Due

An emailing correspondent points out that Mr. Cotsakos's pay package was first reported in The San Jose Mercury News, five days ago. You can read their story here. I'm surprised The Wall Street Journal made no mention of this. They should have.