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A Ciena Payback

4:45 PM -- A columnist on MSN recently labeled Ciena's CEO "overpaid," but his pay has actually been slipping. According to CoreData's U.S. Executive Compensation Database, Ciena CEO Gary Smith saw his total compensation drop almost five percent -- to $1,292,262 from $1,356,002 -- from 2003 to 2004.

But what if you owned Ciena stock instead of Gary Smith stock?

Since January 2, 2004, Ciena's stock has lost 68 percent of its value. So a $10,000 investment then in Ciena would leave you with about $3,200 in the bank today.

— Phil Harvey, News Editor, Light Reading

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