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INTERPUBLIC GROUP OF COMPANIES, INC. filed this Form 10-K on 02/21/2017
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Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations - (continued)
(Amounts in Millions, Except Per Share Amounts)

deferred tax assets will not be realized. The factors used in assessing valuation allowances include all available evidence, such as past operating results, estimates of future taxable income and the feasibility of tax planning strategies. In circumstances where there is negative evidence, establishment of a valuation allowance must be considered. We believe that cumulative losses in the most recent three-year period represent significant negative evidence when evaluating a decision to establish a valuation allowance. Conversely, a pattern of sustained profitability represents significant positive evidence when evaluating a decision to reverse a valuation allowance. Further, in those cases where a pattern of sustained profitability exists, projected future taxable income may also represent positive evidence, to the extent that such projections are determined to be reliable given the current economic environment. Accordingly, the increase and decrease of valuation allowances has had and could have a significant negative or positive impact on our current and future earnings.
The authoritative guidance for uncertainty in income taxes prescribes a recognition threshold and measurement criteria for the financial statement reporting of a tax position that an entity takes or expects to take in a tax return. Additionally, guidance is provided for de-recognition, classification, interest and penalties, accounting in interim periods, disclosure and transition. The assessment of recognition and measurement requires critical estimates and the use of complex judgments. We evaluate our tax positions using the “more likely than not” recognition threshold and then apply a measurement assessment to those positions that meet the recognition threshold. We have established tax reserves that we believe to be adequate in relation to the potential for additional assessments in each of the jurisdictions in which we are subject to taxation. We regularly assess the likelihood of additional tax assessments in those jurisdictions and adjust our reserves as additional information or events require.

Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets
We account for our business combinations using the acquisition accounting method, which requires us to determine the fair value of net assets acquired and the related goodwill and other intangible assets. Determining the fair value of assets acquired and liabilities assumed requires management's judgment and involves the use of significant estimates, including projections of future cash inflows and outflows, discount rates, asset lives and market multiples. Considering the characteristics of advertising, specialized marketing and communication services companies, our acquisitions usually do not have significant amounts of tangible assets, as the principal asset we typically acquire is creative talent. As a result, a substantial portion of the purchase price is allocated to goodwill and other intangible assets.
We review goodwill and other intangible assets with indefinite lives not subject to amortization as of October 1st each year and whenever events or significant changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying value may not be recoverable. We evaluate the recoverability of goodwill at a reporting unit level. We have 11 reporting units that were subject to the 2016 annual impairment testing. Our annual impairment review as of October 1, 2016 did not result in an impairment charge at any of our reporting units.
In performing our annual impairment review, we first assess qualitative factors to determine whether it is “more likely than not” that the goodwill or indefinite-lived intangible assets are impaired. Qualitative factors to consider may include macroeconomic conditions, industry and market considerations, cost factors that may have a negative effect on earnings, financial performance, and other relevant entity-specific events such as changes in management, key personnel, strategy or clients, as well as pending litigation. If, after assessing the totality of events or circumstances such as those described above, an entity determines that it is "more likely than not" that the goodwill or indefinite-lived intangible asset is impaired, then the entity is required to determine the fair value and perform the quantitative impairment test by comparing the fair value with the carrying value. Otherwise, no additional testing is required.
For reporting units not included in the qualitative assessment, or for any reporting units identified in the qualitative assessment as "more likely than not" that the fair value is less than its carrying value, the first step of the quantitative impairment test is performed. For our annual impairment test, we compare the respective fair value of our reporting units' equity to the carrying value of their net assets. The first step is a comparison of the fair value of each reporting unit to its carrying value, including goodwill. The sum of the fair values of all our reporting units is reconciled to our current market capitalization plus an estimated control premium. Goodwill allocated to a reporting unit whose fair value is equal to or greater than its carrying value is not impaired, and no further testing is required. Should the carrying amount for a reporting unit exceed its fair value, then the first step of the quantitative impairment test is failed, and the magnitude of any goodwill impairment is determined under the second step, which is a comparison of the implied fair value of a reporting unit's goodwill to its carrying value. The implied fair value of goodwill is the excess of the fair value of the reporting unit over its carrying value, excluding goodwill. Impaired goodwill is written down to its implied fair value with a charge to expense in the period the impairment is identified.
For our 2016 and 2015 annual impairment tests, we performed a qualitative impairment assessment for seven and ten reporting units and performed the first step of a two-step quantitative impairment test for four and two reporting units, respectively. For the qualitative analysis we took into consideration all the relevant events and circumstances, including financial performance, macroeconomic conditions and entity-specific factors such as client wins and losses. Based on this assessment, we have concluded