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Goodwill impairments are on the rise, latest study says

Tammy Whitehouse | January 3, 2019

Goodwill impairments are rising on corporate balance sheets, and they will get even bigger before they get smaller, according to the latest analysis, suggesting impairment will be a source of heartburn in year-end reporting.

In its tenth annual study of goodwill impairment reporting by U.S. publicly traded companies, advisory firm Duff & Phelps says impairment levels rose 23 percent in 2017 to $35.1 billion. Fueled by mega-impairments like GE’s $2.6 billion markdown and Frontier Communications’ $2.7 billion event, the average goodwill impairment rose by 21 percent to $120 million. The study also identifies indicators that...

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