Timeline: Grasso's Final Days at NYSE

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On Wednesday Richard Grasso (search) resigned as New York Stock Exchange Chairman under heavy criticism about his compensation. The following is a selected list of events leading up to his departure.

Aug. 27 — The New York Stock Exchange says it paid out almost $140 million to Chairman and Chief Executive Richard Grasso in accrued savings, benefits and incentives, and extended his contract two years, until 2007.

Sept. 2 — The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission sends a letter to the New York Stock Exchange asking for "full and complete" details on how the exchange determined the pay package for Grasso.

Sept. 9 — Grasso at a press conference defends his pay and benefits package from critics who said it was too high, but says he will forgo $48 million in additional benefits.

Sept. 10 — Grasso says he will stay in his post as chairman in the face of criticism.

Sept. 16 — New York Comptroller Alan Hevesi, California Treasurer Phil Angelides and the heads of the California Public Employees' Retirement System and the California State Teachers' Retirement System ask that Grasso step down as chairman.

Sept. 17 — Grasso resigns as chairman of the NYSE.