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Apple's head bean counter boasts WORLD'S BIGGEST PACKAGE

Oppenheimer merrily trousers TENS OF MEELLLLIONS

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Apple's chief financial officer Peter Oppenheimer has been named the best paid corporate bean counter of 2012.

According to data from Bloomberg News, the uber-accountant was paid $68.6 million; over an order of magnitude more than the piddling $4.17 million pocketed by his CEO, Tim Cook.

Oracle's CFO Safra Catz edged into second with a monster pay packet of $51.7 million, which made her the best-paid female bean counter, whilst Patrick Pichette from Google was in third with a salary of $38.7 million.

Apple's abacus-strummer presided over one of the biggest bond sales in history, designed to raise cash for investors to compensate for a slowdown in the fruity firm's growth.

He presided over an entirely legal tax dodging ploy by keeping large quantities of Apple's cash offshore, where taxes are lower. This is why Apple decided to issue bonds, rather than paying investors a dividend straight out of a huge cash surplus reckoned to be worth about $145bn.

If this cash was imported back into America, it would incur corporate tax of 35 percent. The strategy saved Apple a sum that's believed to be more than $9bn, according to an estimate by Moody’s Investment Service.

Explaining why these accountants earn more than you and I put together, David Larcker, professor of accounting at the Stanford Graduate School of Business in Stanford, California, said: "They’re a key part of the organization and they’re paid accordingly. It would be very surprising if their performance evaluation wasn’t heavily weighted to minimizing corporate taxes. That’s their job.” ®

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