Driven by legislative and accounting changes, 2004 saw some of the biggest shifts ever seen in executive compensation, according to human resources services consulting and outsourcing firm Hewitt Associates.

In particular, stock option grants took a nosedive. While stock options accounted for nearly 50 percent of total compensation for a Fortune 100 senior executive two years ago, today they account for just 31 percent of such compensation, according to a Hewitt analysis.

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