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Apple Offers To Amend Past Options

In the wake of its backdated stock options troubles, Apple Inc. is offering affected employees the chance to amend their past options and receive cash payments to avoid related tax penalties, according a regulatory filing Friday.

Apple said it sent an e-mail to affected employees, offering them the chance modify the exercise price in accordance with the company's designated schedule.

Apple is one of dozens of companies under federal scrutiny over the backdating of stock options, the practice of pegging a grant date to an earlier, lower point in the company's stock price so the recipient could receive a larger windfall in the future.

Apple's internal three-month investigation last year looked at 42,077 stock-options grants made on 259 dates from October 1996 to January 2003. Of those, 6,428 grants on 42 dates were found to be not dated properly, Apple said.

In Friday's filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Apple said some of the misdated stock options exercised after 2005 are subject to additional taxes.

The Cupertino-based maker of iPod players and Macintosh computers said the value of the affected stock options under the offer was $67,142, as of Tuesday.

The offer is valid until April 16.