IAS 36, goodwill, intangibles, PPE impairment disclosures, VIU basis, sensitivity analysis

ArcelorMittal S.A. – Annual report – 31 December 2019

Industry: manufacturing

(millions of U.S. dollars, except share and per share data)
NOTE 5: GOODWILL, INTANGIBLE AND TANGIBLE ASSETS (extract)
5.1 Goodwill and intangible assets
The carrying amounts of goodwill and intangible assets are summarized as follows:

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  1. In 2018, other included 201 relating to CO2 emission rights, which were surrendered in 2019, and 77 related to favorable land lease contracts in ArcelorMittal Italia, which were reclassified as right-of-use assets upon adoption of IFRS 16 as of January 1, 2019 (see note 7)

Goodwill
Goodwill arising on an acquisition is recognized as previously described within the business combinations section in note 2.2.3. Goodwill is allocated to those groups of cash-generating units that are expected to benefit from the business combination in which the goodwill arose and in all cases is at the operating segment level, which represents the lowest level at which goodwill is monitored for internal management purposes.

Goodwill acquired in business combinations for each of the Company’s operating segments is as follows:

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5.3 Impairment of intangible assets, including goodwill, and tangible assets
Impairment charges recognized were as follows:

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Impairment test of goodwill
Goodwill is tested for impairment annually, as of October 1 or whenever changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount may not be recoverable, at the level of the groups of cash-generating units (“GCGU”) which correspond to the operating segments representing the lowest level at which goodwill is monitored for internal management purposes. Whenever the cash-generating units comprising the operating segments are tested for impairment at the same time as goodwill, the cash-generating units are tested first and any impairment of the assets is recorded prior to the testing of goodwill. Until the year ended December 31, 2017, the Company performed its annual impairment test of goodwill using October 31 as the measurement date. Effective September 2018, the Company changed its impairment test date to October 1 in order to better align with its internal strategic and financial planning process. The Company believes that this change in date is preferable under the circumstances and does not result in the delay, acceleration or avoidance of an impairment charge.

The recoverable amounts of the GCGUs are mainly determined based on their value in use. The value in use of each GCGU is determined by estimating future cash flows. The 2019 impairment test of goodwill did not include the GCGU corresponding to the Mining segment as goodwill allocated to this GCGU was fully impaired in 2015. The key assumptions for the value in use calculations are primarily the discount rates, growth rates, expected changes to average selling prices, shipments and direct costs during the period. Assumptions for average selling prices and shipments are based on historical experience and expectations of future changes in the market. In addition, with respect to raw material price assumptions, the Company applied a range of $63 per tonne to $80 per tonne for iron ore and $145 per tonne to $170 per tonne for coking coal. Cash flow forecasts adjusted for the risks specific to the tested assets are derived from the most recent financial plans approved by management for the next five years. Beyond the specifically forecasted period, the Company extrapolates cash flows for the remaining years based on an estimated growth rate of 2%. This rate does not exceed the average long-term growth rate for the relevant markets.

Management estimates discount rates using pre-tax rates that reflect current market rates for investments of similar risk. The rate for each GCGU was estimated from the weighted average cost of capital of producers, which operate a portfolio of assets similar to those of the Company’s assets.

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Once recognized, impairment losses for goodwill are not reversed.

There was no impairment charge recognized with respect to goodwill following the Company’s impairment test as of October 1, 2019. The total value in use calculated for all GCGUs decreased overall in 2019 as compared to 2018. In 2018, the Company recognized a 18 and 16 impairment loss relating to goodwill in connection with the sale of the Votorantim remedies and the intended sale of the ArcelorMittal Italia remedies (see note 2.3.1).

In validating the value in use determined for the GCGUs, the Company performed a sensitivity analysis of key assumptions used in the discounted cash-flow model (such as discount rates, average selling prices and shipments). The Company believes that reasonably possible changes in key assumptions could cause an impairment loss to be recognized in respect of the NAFTA and ACIS segments.

ACIS produces a combination of flat and long products. Its facilities are located in Africa, Ukraine and the Commonwealth of Independent States. ACIS is significantly self-sufficient in raw materials. The Company believes that sales volumes, prices and discount rates are the key assumptions most sensitive to change. ACIS is also exposed to export markets and international steel prices which are volatile, reflecting the cyclical nature of the global steel industry, developments in particular steel consuming
industries and macroeconomic trends of emerging markets, such as economic growth. Discount rates may be affected by changes in countries’ specific risks. The ACIS value in use model anticipates an increase in sales volumes in 2020 and 2021 compared to 2019 (11.5 million tonnes for the year ended December 31, 2019) followed by stable volumes thereafter. Average selling prices in the model are expected to increase in 2020 due to higher international raw material prices and stabilize subsequently in line with such long-term prices.

The NAFTA segment produces a combination of flat, long and tubular products. Its facilities are located in North America including Canada, the USA and Mexico. The segment is primarily focused on the domestic automotive industry in Canada, the USA while in Mexico a major investment program has been launched to build downstream capabilities in order to anticipate increased demand from domestic customers for flat and long products. The Company believes that sales volumes, prices and discount rates are the key assumptions most sensitive to change. The NAFTA model anticipates a decrease in sales volumes in 2020 compared to 2019 (20.9 million tonnes for the year ended December 31, 2019) followed by an increase in 2021 and stable volumes thereafter. Average steel selling prices in the model are expected to decrease slightly and stabilize after 2022.

The following changes in key assumptions in projected earnings in every year of initial five-year period and perpetuity, at the GCGU level, assuming unchanged values for the other assumptions, would cause the recoverable amount to equal respective carrying value as of the impairment test date (i.e.: October 1, 2019).

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In 2018, given the overall increase in value in use, the Company did not identify any reasonably possible change in key assumptions which could cause an impairment loss to be recognized.

Impairment test of property, plant and equipment
At each reporting date, ArcelorMittal reviews the carrying amounts of its intangible assets (excluding goodwill) and tangible assets to determine whether there is any indication that the carrying amount of those assets may not be recoverable through continuing use. If any such indication exists, the recoverable amount of the asset (or cash generating unit) is reviewed in order to determine the amount of the impairment, if any. The recoverable amount is the higher of its net selling price (fair value reduced by selling costs) and its value in use.

In estimating its value in use, the estimated future cash flows are discounted to their present value using a pre-tax discount rate that reflects current market assessments of the time value of money and the risks specific to the asset (or cash-generating unit). For an asset that does not generate cash inflows largely independent of those from other assets, the recoverable amount is determined for the cash-generating unit to which the asset belongs. The cash-generating unit is the smallest identifiable group of assets corresponding to operating units that generate cash inflows. If the recoverable amount of an asset (or cash-generating unit) is estimated to be less than its carrying amount, an impairment loss is recognized. An impairment loss is recognized as an expense immediately as part of operating income in the consolidated statements of operations.

In the case of permanently idled assets, the impairment is measured at the individual asset level. Otherwise, the Company’s assets are measured for impairment at the cash-generating unit level. In certain instances, the cash-generating unit is an integrated manufacturing facility which may also be an operating subsidiary. Further, a manufacturing facility may be operated in concert with another facility with neither facility generating cash flows that are largely independent from the cash flows of the other. In this instance, the two facilities are combined for purposes of testing for impairment. As of December 31, 2019, the Company determined it has 61 cash-generating units.

In the context of the termination notice sent to the Ilva Commissioners indicating ArcelorMittal’s intent to withdraw from or terminate the lease and purchase agreement, which was followed by subsequent negotiations (see note 9.3), the Company determined that ArcelorMittal Italia represented a separate cash-generating unit as of December 31, 2019 with a carrying amount of 1,970 (including property, plant and equipment of 1,477). In estimating its value in use, key assumptions impacting significantly the cash flow projections included the discount rate reflecting uncertainty associated with the ongoing negotiations, selling prices, shipments and direct costs resulting from the execution of the industrial plan as contractually agreed at inception of the lease.

An impairment loss, related to intangible assets other than goodwill and tangible assets recognized in prior years is reversed if, and only if, there has been a change in the estimates used to determine the asset’s recoverable amount since the last impairment loss was recognized. However, the increased carrying amount of an asset due to a reversal of an impairment loss will not exceed the carrying amount that would have been determined (net of amortization or depreciation) had no impairment loss been
recognized for the asset in prior years. A reversal of an impairment loss is recognized immediately as part of operating income in the consolidated statements of operations.

Impairment charges relating to property, plant and equipment were as follows for the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018 and 2017:

2019
In 2019, the Company recognized a total impairment charge related to property, plant and equipment amounting to 1,927, of which 1,300 relating to ArcelorMittal USA (NAFTA), 102 to ArcelorMittal South Africa (ACIS), and 525 in Europe, including 497 related to ArcelorMittal Italia remedies (see note 2.3.1).

During the six months ended June 30, 2019, the Company recognized an impairment charge for property, plant and equipment amounting to 600 relating to ArcelorMittal USA as a result of a downward revision of cash flow projections in particular with respect to near-term steel selling prices as follows:

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In the second half of 2019, in connection with management’s annual test for impairment of goodwill, property, plant and equipment was also tested for impairment at that date. The Company recognized an impairment charge for property, plant and equipment amounting to 700 relating to ArcelorMittal USA in the NAFTA operating segment as a result of a downward revision of cash flow projections in particular with respect to near-term steel selling prices consisting of the following:

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In the same context, the Company recognized a impairment charge for property, plant and equipment of 75 relating to the Long Steel Products facility of Newcastle in ArcelorMittal South Africa as a result of a lower domestic volumes as follows:arcelor18

In addition, the Company recorded impairment charges for property, plant and equipment of ArcelorMittal South Africa of 27 including 20 with respect to the closure of the Saldanha facility.

2018
In 2018, the Company recognized a total impairment charge related to property, plant and equipment of 960 including 872 in connection with the intended sale of the ArcelorMittal Italia remedies and 68 in relation to the sale of the Votorantim remedies (see note 2.3.1).

2017
In 2017, the Company recognized a total impairment charge related to property, plant and equipment in ArcelorMittal South Africa (ACIS) amounting to 206.

During the six months ended June 30, 2017, management performed a test for impairment relating to the Long Steel Products cash-generating unit of ArcelorMittal South Africa as a result of a downward revision of cash flow projections. Accordingly, the Company recognized an impairment charge of 46 consisting of the following:

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In connection with management’s annual test for impairment of goodwill, property, plant and equipment was also tested for impairment at that date. As of December 31, 2017, the Company concluded that the value in use of property, plant and equipment in ArcelorMittal South Africa was lower than its carrying amount in the context of the appreciation of the rand against U.S. dollar and the uncertainties about demand outlook. Accordingly, the Company recognized a total impairment charge of 160 consisting mainly of the following:

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