This excerpt taken from the ICE 10-K filed Mar 10, 2006.
Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets
The Company has recorded goodwill for the excess of the purchase price for its acquisition of ICE Futures (formerly known as the International Petroleum Exchange) in June 2001 over the fair value of identifiable net assets acquired, including other identified intangible assets (Note 6). The Company recognizes specifically identifiable intangibles when a specific right or contract is acquired. Finite-lived intangible assets are amortized on a straight-line basis over the lesser of their contractual or estimated useful lives.
The Companys indefinite-lived intangible assets are evaluated for impairment annually in its fiscal fourth quarter or sooner if events indicate that the asset may be impaired. Such evaluation includes comparing the fair value of the asset with its carrying value. If the fair value of the indefinite-lived intangible asset is less than its carrying value, an impairment loss is recognized in an amount equal to the difference. The reporting unit level for the Companys goodwill and the majority of its other intangible assets is the futures business segment, which relates to the operations of ICE Futures. This analysis did not result in an impairment charge during the years ended December 31, 2005, 2004 or 2003.
The Company tests its goodwill for impairment at the reporting unit level utilizing a two-step methodology. The initial step requires the Company to determine the fair value of each reporting unit and compare it to the carrying value, including goodwill and other intangible assets, of such reporting unit. If the fair value exceeds the carrying value, no impairment loss is recognized and the second step, which is a calculation of the impairment, is not performed. However, if the carrying value of the reporting unit exceeds its fair value, an impairment charge is recorded equal to the extent that the carrying amount of goodwill exceeds its implied fair value.