This excerpt taken from the MRK 8-K filed Jun 22, 2009.
Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets
Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) SFAS No. 142, Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets, requires that intangible assets acquired either individually or with a group of other assets be initially recognized and measured based on fair value. An intangible with a finite life is amortized over its useful life, while an intangible with an indefinite life, including goodwill, is not amortized.
The Company assesses the recoverability of the carrying value of its goodwill and other intangible assets with indefinite useful lives annually or whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount of the asset may not be fully recoverable. Recoverability of goodwill is measured at the reporting unit level based on a two-step approach. First, the carrying amount of the reporting unit is compared to the fair value as estimated by the future net discounted cash flows expected to be generated by the reporting unit. To the extent that the carrying value of the reporting unit exceeds the fair value of the reporting unit, a second step would be performed, whereby the reporting units assets and liabilities are fair valued. To the extent that the reporting units carrying value of goodwill exceeds its implied fair value of goodwill, an impairment exists and would be recognized.
Recoverability of other intangible assets with indefinite useful lives is measured by a comparison of the carrying amount of the intangible assets to the fair value of the respective intangible assets. Any excess of the carrying value of the intangible assets over the fair value of the intangible assets would be recognized as an impairment loss.
Schering-Plough conducts its annual impairment testing of goodwill at October 1 each year. Based on the impairment tests performed, there was no impairment of goodwill in 2008, 2007 or 2006.
In 2007, Schering-Ploughs goodwill and other intangible asset balances increased significantly due to the acquisition of OBS. See Note 2, Acquisition, and Note 13, Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets, for additional information.