December 10, 2010, 9:23 AM — You have to wonder how a guy who lets money from major corporations literally slip through his fingers was able to build the world's most valuable technology company.
Steve Jobs has yet to accept small amounts of money owed to him by several companies, including his own.
Apple filed a claim with the state of California saying its CEO, Steven P. Jobs, hasn't claimed property worth $37.91, according to a listing with the state controller's office.
But that's just the tip of Jobs's colossal personal financial mismanagement. IBM reports that it owes Jobs $21.45 in stock. Unclaimed. Big Blue also owes him another asset worth $14.30. Unclaimed. Time Warner owes Jobs 20 cents. Unclaimed.
Steve, you're going to make Suze Orman faint.
As CNN explains, California law requires that the state post claims "for property 'abandoned or lost' for more than three years." The owner has six months to claim the assets. After that, they're transferred to the state's Controller's Office, which then will try to contact the owner under the Unclaimed Property Program.
Hopefully Jobs will be easier to track down than HP's Leo Apotheker. It'd be nice if he can get that money in time for the holidays. He's worked hard and deserves a little something extra.
But the first thing Jobs should buy with that cash is a book on handling personal finances. Or maybe a metal detector. I hear those are good.
A final word of advice: Steve, you may be a billionaire now, but this lax attitude toward money will catch up with you someday, mister. Change your ways now before it's too late.
Chris Nerney writes about the business side of technology market strategies and trends, legal issues, leadership changes, mergers, venture capital, IPOs and technology stocks. Follow him on Twitter @ChrisNerney.