This excerpt taken from the HPQ 10-K filed Dec 17, 2009.
Goodwill and Purchased Intangible Assets
Goodwill and purchased intangible assets with indefinite useful lives are not amortized but are tested for impairment at least annually. HP reviews goodwill and purchased intangible assets with indefinite lives for impairment annually at the beginning of its fourth fiscal quarter and whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate the carrying value of an asset may not be recoverable. For goodwill, HP performs a two-step impairment test. In the first step, HP compares the fair value of each reporting unit to its carrying value. Our reporting units are consistent with the reportable segments identified in Note 19. HP determines the fair value of its reporting units based on a weighting of
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements (Continued)
Note 1: Summary of Significant Accounting Policies (Continued)
income and market approaches. Under the income approach, HP calculates the fair value of a reporting unit based on the present value of estimated future cash flows. Under the market approach, HP estimates the fair value based on market multiples of revenue or earnings for comparable companies. If the fair value of the reporting unit exceeds the carrying value of the net assets assigned to that unit, goodwill is not impaired and no further testing is performed. If the carrying value of the net assets assigned to the reporting unit exceeds the fair value of the reporting unit, then HP must perform the second step of the impairment test in order to determine the implied fair value of the reporting unit's goodwill. If the carrying value of a reporting unit's goodwill exceeds its implied fair value, HP records an impairment loss equal to the difference.
The fair value of the indefinite-lived purchased intangible assets is estimated and compared to the carrying value. HP estimates the fair value of these intangible assets using an income approach. HP recognizes an impairment loss when the estimated fair value of the indefinite-lived purchased intangible assets is less than the carrying value.
HP amortizes purchased intangible assets with finite lives using the straight-line method over the estimated economic lives of the assets, ranging from one to ten years.