cook heroApple CEO Tim Cook today sold more than $43 million worth of Apple stock, according to documents filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.

Cook sold 268,623 shares at prices ranging from $159.27 to $161.43, earning more than $43 million, all of which is held in a trust. Cook's stock was sold as part of a pre-arranged Rule 10b5-1 Plan set up in May of 2017, according to the SEC.

Cook sold the stock after 560,000 RSUs vested on August 24, 2017. 280,000 of the restricted stock units he received were time based, while another 280,000 were performance based.

A restricted stock unit (aka RSU) is compensation valued in terms of a company's stock, but the stock is not issued at the time of the grant. Instead, the recipient receives the stock at a later date, a method generally used to make sure employees stay with a company for a set period of time.

While Cook was originally set to receive 1,000,000 RSUs awarded over a 10-year period in two lump sums (the 1,000,000 share number was prior to Apple's 2014 7-1 stock split -- it's now 7,000,000), a 2013 amendment modified how his stock is awarded, shifting it from a time-based system to a performance-based system with the RSUs doled out over a 10-year period from 2011 to 2021.

Cook received one lump sum of 700,000 RSUs in 2016, and will receive another 700,000 in 2021. The remaining 5,600,000 RSUs are awarded based on Apple's performance compared to other companies in the S&P 500.

If Apple's total shareholder return is within the top third of the best performing companies in the S&P 500, Cook receives all 560,000 RSUs in a given year. If the company's performance is in the middle third, Cook's award is reduced by 25 percent, and if Apple happens to fall in the bottom third, Cook's award is reduced by 50 percent.

As Apple performed well this year, Cook received all 560,000 shares in 2017. In addition to the stock Cook sold, Apple also sold 291,377 shares worth $46 million on Cook's behalf to settle his tax liability for the RSUs.

Top Rated Comments

Pipper99 Avatar
63 months ago
Steve Jobs would never have sold Tim Cook's stock.
Score: 42 Votes (Like | Disagree)
OldSchoolMacGuy Avatar
63 months ago
Have said it before, will say it again ... the iPhone 8 "without" Touch ID is a looming catastrophe ! ... Tim Cook very-likely knows this ... it's the single biggest R&D gamble Apple has made in a long, long time ... Apple made a Tech Gamble on Touch ID (under Glass), and it didn't pay off ... at least by the Intro of the iPhone 8 ... as such, IMO, only the Extremely Young and Extremely Dumb will buy-into the iPhone 8 sales pitch (that Facial Recognition / Face ID is the greatest thing since indoor plumbing) ... most will balk at the iPhone 8's price AND certainly w/o Touch ID (under Glass).

If I was running Apple I way announce the iPhone 8 on September 12th, but also state that we're NOT going to market UNTIL Touch ID (under Glass) is functional & secure to our satisfaction.

NO ONE should be surprised if Apple is trading under $100/share within 3 months after September 12th, if Apple chooses the wrong course of action.
That's the silliest nonsense I've ever seen posted on MR. No one thinks Apple will trade for under $100/share in 3 months, no matter what the announcement later this month. Believing that would show a complete lack of knowledge of business, sales, and reality.

There's a reason you aren't running Apple and it's clear by your statement that you aren't in a position to run any successful business.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
garirry Avatar
63 months ago
I wish I could sell $43M in anything.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
OldSchoolMacGuy Avatar
63 months ago
Aren’t there tax reasons he sells stock at certain times?
Yes. Every time one of these articles gets posted, idiots think Apple is doomed. What they don't understand is that executives at all companies can only sell stock at certain times and must disclose it in advance. They can't simply dump their stock right before a product release because they think things look bad. They have to file their intentions to sell months in advance in most cases.

Tim has sold stock before, just as Zuckerberg and every other CEO at most long established companies have done. Cook still has over $100 million in Apple stock. If he believed they were doomed, why wouldn't he sell it all instead of holding on to the majority?
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
OPBD Avatar
63 months ago
This was part of a Rule 10b5-1 trading plan which was set in motion earlier this year and shares will be sold automatically per the trading plan so that Tim does not run afoul of insider trading rules. He still owns over $470 million of Apple stock so this sale is less than 10% of his holdings.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Michael Scrip Avatar
63 months ago
Yes. Every time one of these articles gets posted, idiots think Apple is doomed. What they don't understand is that executives at all companies can only sell stock at certain times and must disclose it in advance.
MacRumors should start every one of these article with that:

"Tim Cook occasionally schedules stock-selling... just like every other CEO..."

:P
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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