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Steve Jobs is the highest paid executive in the US

Steve Jobs is the highest paid executive in the US

Apple's chief executive pockets £323m

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Steve Jobs' $1 salary was dwarfed by $646m (£323m) in stock compensation for 2006, Forbes magazine said, rannking the Apple chief executive as the highest paid executive in the US.

In its annual chief executive paycheck scorecard of America's 500 biggest companies, Forbes said the £323m for Jobs was more than twice the compensation of the next person on the list: Ray Irani of Occidental Petroleum, who took home $321.6m (£160m) - the bulk of it from exercised stock options.

The next-highest-paid chief executive in the technology field after Jobs was Terry Semel of Yahoo, who ranked fifth. Semel pulled in $174.2m (£87.1m), all but $600,000 (£300,000) in realised options. Michael Dell, the newly-returned chief executive of Dell, followed at sixth. The 42-year-old made $153.2m (£76.6m), small potatoes to a man who owns company stock worth nearly $5.4bn (£2.7bn).

Rounding out the top 25, Larry Ellison of Oracle collected $72.4m (£36.1m) in 2006 to make the 12th spot on the Forbes list, while John Chambers of Cisco Systems received $71.3m (£36.6m) for No. 15.

Steve Ballmer, chief executive of Microsoft, was a compensation pauper in comparison; he took home $980,000 (£490,000) for the year and was placed at a lowly 481.

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