How is Goodwill Value Calculated?

A business’s goodwill is a valuable asset that reflects the synergy between its assets. It is difficult to value business good will, but knowing how to assess and price it can make a company more valuable. Goodwill has subjective values, so business owners may either over or undervalue the good will component of their businesses. This article outlines some of the key considerations to help you determine the goodwill value of a business.

Intangible asset

Goodwill is an intangible asset that is paid over its fair value during a transaction. Good will is different from other intangible assets because it cannot be sold on its own. Other types of intangible assets include licenses and patents, which have definite useful lives. The FASB is still considering changes to how good will is measured and amortized. Here are some things to keep in mind when determining the fair value of goodwill.

What is goodwill? Goodwill is the reputation of a business that cannot be physically seen or touched. It can be bought and sold for a monetary value, but it is not tangible. Moreover, it does not depreciate. This makes it a great asset to have in a partnership firm. Moreover, it affects the valuation of the partnership firm. It’s important to understand what good will is so that you can buy it at a reasonable price.

Indefinite life

The indefinite life of good will is often confusing, and the term is not always logical. It reflects the future economic benefits from synergies and represents assets that cannot be recognized separately. Unlike other intangible assets, good will has no definite useful life. Often, it is paid over fair value during the transaction. This is not the same as other intangible assets, such as licenses.

An indefinite life is a useful life beyond which the asset will not be able to be amortized. SFAS 142 addresses intangible assets, including good will, and requires that these assets be amortized over their economic lives. Indefinite life does not mean infinite. Indefinite life simply means that the asset will not be depreciated until the useful life is determined to be finite. Even if the asset has an indefinite life, it is still important to evaluate its value and recognize any impairment.


Measurement of goodwill in business combinations has long been a contentious issue. Different standard-setters have promulgated varying approaches to goodwill accounting. A recent proposal by the FASB to streamline the impairment model has reignited the debate. This paper analyzes the impact of the new proposal and offers countermeasures for both the initial and impairment recognition of goodwill. The paper explains why the current measurement model is inadequate.

The underlying reason for this debate is the lack of international convergence. The new International Financial Accounting Standard does not require that goodwill acquired through a business combination be amortized, and it no longer requires that the acquisition be tested for impairment. The objective of the new standard is to move toward international convergence. In addition to discussing the current changes, this article examines some key differences in accounting treatment. Ultimately, it is important to understand why accounting for goodwill is a complex issue, as its measurement is the most critical aspect of a company’s financial statements.


If you’re looking for a trigger to perform a goodwill impairment test, you should know the details of the scenario and know the reasons behind it. The market capitalization of your reporting units may not be equivalent to the total fair value of the company’s goodwill, so this is a triggering event. But when does impairment of goodwill occur? The process should begin as soon as the market capitalization of your reporting units declines by more than 10%. This period of market decline is considered a significant indication of a triggering event, according to the SEC staff.

There are two ways to test whether goodwill is impaired: through qualitative factors, or through a quantitative one. The first step of an impairment test compares the fair value of a reporting unit to its carrying amount, which includes goodwill. If the carrying amount of a reporting unit exceeds the fair value, then the goodwill is impaired. It is important to remember that a negative number for goodwill is not an indication of goodwill impairment.


As the value of goodwill continues to rise, companies should consider performing an annual goodwill impairment test. However, this test can be time-consuming and costly, especially for smaller companies with limited internal resources. The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) recently published amendments to ASC 350 to allow companies to amortize goodwill. These amendments are effective January 1, 2017 and later. While early adoption may be permitted, the standard will not be mandatory until the year 2022.

Final Words:

The new guidance from the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) simplifies the process for both private and public companies, making it easier to calculate impairment losses for goodwill. Private companies have been using the one-step process for several years. Under the current standards, an impairment loss is measured as the excess of carrying amount over the fair value and is limited to the total amount of goodwill allocated to a reporting unit. SFASB has also simplified the test to eliminate the need for the second step.

Leave a Comment