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These CEOs Could Earn Millions From Stock Awards Valued at Zero

  • Boards tie equity grants to goals deemed unlikely to be met
  • Potention pay can then be left off company compensation tables

As scrutiny of executive compensation intensifies, some companies are using a little-known technique that keeps potential payouts under the radar.

Six Flags Entertainment Corp. and Tempur Sealy International Inc. have awarded millions of dollars in stock to top bosses and given the equity a unique value: zero. To use that figure, the companies set performance targets they said were unlikely to be met.