Note 1. Summary of Significant Accounting Policies
Principles of Consolidation and Financial Statement Presentation
Our Consolidated Financial Statements include the accounts of Textron Inc. and its majority-owned subsidiaries. Our financings are conducted through two separate borrowing groups. The Manufacturing group consists of Textron Inc. consolidated with its majority-owned subsidiaries that operate in the Textron Aviation, Bell, Textron Systems and Industrial segments. The Finance group, which also is the Finance segment, consists of Textron Financial Corporation (TFC) and its consolidated subsidiaries. We designed this framework to enhance our borrowing power by separating the Finance group. Our Manufacturing group operations include the development, production and delivery of tangible goods and services, while our Finance group provides financial services. Due to the fundamental differences between each borrowing group’s activities, investors, rating agencies and analysts use different measures to evaluate each group’s performance. To support those evaluations, we present balance sheet and cash flow information for each borrowing group within the Consolidated Financial Statements.
Our Finance group provides financing primarily to purchasers of new and pre-owned Textron Aviation aircraft and Bell helicopters manufactured by our Manufacturing group, otherwise known as captive financing. In the Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows, cash received from customers is reflected as operating activities when received from third parties. However, in the cash flow information provided for the separate borrowing groups, cash flows related to captive financing activities are reflected based on the operations of each group. For example, when product is sold by our Manufacturing group to a customer and is financed by the Finance group, the origination of the finance receivable is recorded within investing activities as a cash outflow in the Finance group’s statement of cash flows. Meanwhile, in the Manufacturing group’s statement of cash flows, the cash received from the Finance group on the customer’s behalf is recorded within operating cash flows as a cash inflow. Although cash is transferred between the two borrowing groups, there is no cash transaction reported in the consolidated cash flows at the time of the original financing. These captive financing activities, along with all significant intercompany transactions, are reclassified or eliminated in consolidation.
At the beginning of 2018, we adopted Accounting Standards Update (ASU) No. 2014-09, Revenue from Contracts with Customers (ASC Topic 606) and its related amendments, collectively referred to as ASC 606. We adopted ASC 606 using the modified retrospective transition method applied to contracts that were not substantially complete at the end of 2017. We recorded a $90 million adjustment to increase retained earnings to reflect the cumulative impact of adopting this standard at the beginning of 2018, primarily related to certain long-term contracts our Bell segment has with the U.S. Government that converted to the cost-to-cost method for revenue recognition. The comparative information included in our financial statements and notes has not been restated and is reported under the accounting standards in effect for those periods based on the policies described in this note for the applicable year.
We also adopted ASU No. 2016-15, Statement of Cash Flows - Classification of Certain Cash Receipts and Cash Payment at the beginning of 2018. This standard provides guidance on the classification of certain cash flows and requires companies to classify cash proceeds received from the settlement of corporate-owned life insurance as cash inflows from investing activities. The standard is required to be adopted on a retrospective basis. Prior to adoption of this standard, we classified these proceeds as operating activities in the Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows. Upon adoption, we reclassified $17 million and $87 million of net cash proceeds for 2017 and 2016, respectively, from operating activities to investing activities.
Our Bell segment has a strategic alliance agreement with The Boeing Company (Boeing) to provide engineering, development and test services related to the V-22 aircraft, as well as to produce the V-22 aircraft, under a number of separate contracts with the U.S. Government (V-22 Contracts). The alliance created by this agreement is not a legal entity and has no employees, no assets and no true operations. This agreement creates contractual rights and does not represent an entity in which we have an equity interest. We account for this alliance as a collaborative arrangement with Bell and Boeing reporting costs incurred and revenues generated from transactions with the U.S. Government in each company’s respective income statement. Neither Bell nor Boeing is considered to be the principal participant for the transactions recorded under this agreement. Profits on cost-plus contracts are allocated between Bell and Boeing on a 50%-50% basis. Negotiated profits on fixed-price contracts are also allocated 50%-50%; however, Bell and Boeing are each responsible for their own cost overruns and are entitled to retain any cost underruns. Based on the contractual arrangement established under the alliance, Bell accounts for its rights and obligations under the specific requirements of the V-22 Contracts allocated to Bell under the work breakdown structure. We account for all of our rights and obligations, including warranty, product and any contingent liabilities, under the specific requirements of the V-22 Contracts allocated to us under the agreement. Revenues and cost of sales reflect our performance under the V-22 Contracts with revenues recognized using the cost-to-cost method upon the adoption of ASC 606. We include all assets used in performance of the V-22 Contracts that we own and all liabilities arising from our obligations under the V-22 Contracts in our Consolidated Balance Sheets.
Use of Estimates
We prepare our financial statements in conformity with generally accepted accounting principles, which require us to make estimates and assumptions that affect the amounts reported in the financial statements. Actual results could differ from those estimates. Our estimates and assumptions are reviewed periodically, and the effects of changes, if any, are reflected in the Consolidated Statements of Operations in the period that they are determined.
Revenue Recognition for 2018
With the adoption of ASC 606 at the beginning of 2018, revenue is recognized when control of the goods or services promised under the contract is transferred to the customer either at a point in time (e.g., upon delivery) or over time (e.g., as we perform under the contract). We account for a contract when it has approval and commitment from both parties, the rights and payment terms of the parties are identified, the contract has commercial substance and collectability of consideration is probable. Contracts are reviewed to determine whether there is one or multiple performance obligations. A performance obligation is a promise to transfer a distinct good or service to a customer and represents the unit of accounting for revenue recognition. For contracts with multiple performance obligations, the expected consideration, or the transaction price, is allocated to each performance obligation identified in the contract based on the relative standalone selling price of each performance obligation. Revenue is then recognized for the transaction price allocated to the performance obligation when control of the promised goods or services underlying the performance obligation is transferred. Contract consideration is not adjusted for the effects of a significant financing component when, at contract inception, the period between when control transfers and when the customer will pay for that good or service is one year or less.
The majority of our contracts with commercial customers have a single performance obligation as there is only one good or service promised or the promise to transfer the goods or services is not distinct or separately identifiable from other promises in the contract. Revenue is primarily recognized at a point in time, which is generally when the customer obtains control of the asset upon delivery and customer acceptance. Contract modifications that provide for additional distinct goods or services at the standalone selling price are treated as separate contracts.
For commercial aircraft, we contract with our customers to sell fully outfitted fixed-wing aircraft, which may include configuration options. The aircraft typically represents a single performance obligation and revenue is recognized upon customer acceptance and delivery. For commercial helicopters, our customers generally contract with us for fully functional basic configuration aircraft and control is transferred upon customer acceptance and delivery. At times, customers may separately contract with us for the installation of accessories and customization to the basic aircraft. If these contracts are entered into at or near the same time of the basic aircraft contract, we assess whether the contracts meet the criteria to be combined. For contracts that are combined, the basic aircraft and the accessories and customization are typically considered to be distinct, and therefore, are separate performance obligations. For these contracts, revenue is recognized on the basic aircraft upon customer acceptance and transfer of title and risk of loss and on the accessories and customization upon delivery and customer acceptance. We utilize observable prices to determine the standalone selling prices when allocating the transaction price to these performance obligations.
The transaction price for our commercial contracts reflects our estimate of returns, rebates and discounts, which are based on historical, current and forecasted information. Amounts billed to customers for shipping and handling are included in the transaction price and generally are not treated as separate performance obligations as these costs fulfill a promise to transfer the product to the customer. Taxes collected from customers and remitted to government authorities are recorded on a net basis.
We primarily provide standard warranty programs for products in our commercial businesses for periods that typically range from one to five years. These assurance-type programs typically cannot be purchased separately and do not meet the criteria to be considered a performance obligation.
U.S. Government Contracts
Our contracts with the U.S. Government generally include the design, development, manufacture or modification of aerospace and defense products as well as related services. These contracts, which also include those under the U.S. Government-sponsored foreign military sales program, accounted for approximately 24% of total revenues in 2018. The customer typically contracts with us to provide a significant service of integrating a complex set of tasks and components into a single project or capability, which often results in the delivery of multiple units. Accordingly, the entire contract is accounted for as one performance obligation. In certain circumstances, a contract may include both production and support services, such as logistics and parts plans, which are considered to be distinct in the context of the contract and represent separate performance obligations. When a contract is separated into more than one performance obligation, we generally utilize the expected cost plus a margin approach to determine the standalone selling prices when allocating the transaction price.
Our contracts are frequently modified for changes in contract specifications and requirements. Most of our contract modifications with the U.S. Government are for goods and services that are not distinct from the existing contract due to the significant integration service provided in the context of the contract and are accounted for as part of that existing contract. The effect of these contract modifications on our estimates is recognized using the cumulative catch-up method of accounting.
Contracts with the U.S. Government generally contain clauses that provide lien rights to work-in-process along with clauses that allow the customer to unilaterally terminate the contract for convenience, pay us for costs incurred plus a reasonable profit and take control of any work-in-process. Due to the continuous transfer of control to the U.S. Government, we recognize revenue over the time that we perform under the contract. Selecting the method to measure progress towards completion requires judgment and is based on the nature of the products or service to be provided. We generally use the cost-to-cost method to measure progress for our contracts because it best depicts the transfer of control to the customer that occurs as we incur costs on our contracts. Under this measure, the extent of progress towards completion is measured based on the ratio of costs incurred to date to the estimated costs at completion of the performance obligation, and revenue is recorded proportionally as costs are incurred.
The transaction price for our contracts represents our best estimate of the consideration we will receive and includes assumptions regarding variable consideration as applicable. Certain of our long-term contracts contain incentive fees or other provisions that can either increase or decrease the transaction price. These variable amounts generally are awarded upon achievement of certain performance metrics, program milestones or cost targets and can be based upon customer discretion. We include estimated amounts in the transaction price to the extent it is probable that a significant reversal of cumulative revenue recognized will not occur when the uncertainty associated with the variable consideration is resolved. Our estimates of variable consideration and determination of whether to include estimated amounts in the transaction price are based largely on an assessment of our anticipated performance, historical performance, and all other information that is reasonably available to us.
Total contract cost is estimated utilizing current contract specifications and expected engineering requirements. Contract costs typically are incurred over a period of several years, and the estimation of these costs requires substantial judgment. Our cost estimation process is based on the professional knowledge and experience of engineers and program managers along with finance professionals. We review and update our projections of costs quarterly or more frequently when circumstances significantly change.
Approximately 80% of our 2018 revenues with the U.S. Government were under fixed-price and fixed-price incentive contracts. Under the typical payment terms of these contracts, the customer pays us either performance-based or progress payments. Performance-based payments represent interim payments of up to 90% of the contract price based on quantifiable measures of performance or on the achievement of specified events or milestones. Progress payments are interim payments of up to 80% of costs incurred as the work progresses. Because the customer retains a small portion of the contract price until completion of the contract, these contracts generally result in revenue recognized in excess of billings, which we present as contract assets in the Consolidated Balance Sheets. Amounts billed and due from our customers are classified in Accounts receivable, net. The portion of the payments retained by the customer until final contract settlement is not considered a significant financing component because the intent is to protect the customer. For cost-type contracts, we are generally paid for our actual costs incurred within a short period of time.
Revenue Recognition for 2017 and 2016
Prior to the adoption of ASC 606 in 2018, we generally recognized revenue for the sale of products, which were not under long-term contracts, upon delivery. For commercial aircraft, delivery is upon completion of manufacturing, customer acceptance, and the transfer of the risk and rewards of ownership. When a sale arrangement involved multiple deliverables, such as sales of products that include customization and other services, we evaluated the arrangement to determine whether there were separate items that were required to be delivered under the arrangement that qualify as separate units of accounting. These arrangements typically involved the customization services we offer to customers who purchase Bell helicopters, and the services generally are provided within the first six months after the customer accepts the aircraft and assumes risk of loss. The aircraft and the customization services were considered to be separate units of accounting and we allocated contract price between the two on a relative selling price basis using the best evidence of selling price for each of the deliverables, typically by reference to the price charged when the same or similar items were sold separately by us. We also considered any performance, cancellation, termination or refund-type provisions. Revenue was then recognized when the recognition criteria for each unit of accounting was met. Taxes collected from customers and remitted to government authorities are recorded on a net basis.
Revenues under long-term contracts were accounted for under the percentage-of-completion method of accounting. Under this method, we estimated profit as the difference between the total estimated revenues and cost of a contract. We then recognized that estimated profit over the contract term based on either the units-of-delivery method or the cost-to-cost method (which typically is used for development effort as costs are incurred), as appropriate under the circumstances. Revenues under fixed-price contracts generally were recorded using the units-of-delivery method. Revenues under cost-reimbursement contracts were recorded using the cost-to-cost method. Long-term contract profits were based on estimates of total contract cost and revenues utilizing current contract specifications, expected engineering requirements, the achievement of contract milestones and product deliveries. Certain contracts are awarded with fixed-price incentive fees that also were considered when estimating revenues and profit rates. Contract costs typically are incurred over a period of several years, and the estimation of these costs requires substantial judgment. Our cost estimation process is based on the professional knowledge and experience of engineers and program managers along with finance professionals. We update our projections of costs at least semiannually or when circumstances significantly change. When adjustments are required, any changes from prior estimates were recognized using the cumulative catch-up method with the impact of the change from inception-to-date recorded in the current period. Anticipated losses on contracts were recognized in full in the period in which the losses became probable and estimable.
Finance revenues primarily include interest on finance receivables, capital lease earnings and portfolio gains/losses. Portfolio gains/losses include impairment charges related to repossessed assets and properties and gains/losses on the sale or early termination of finance assets. We recognize interest using the interest method, which provides a constant rate of return over the terms of the receivables. Accrual of interest income is suspended if credit quality indicators suggest full collection of principal and interest is doubtful. In addition, we automatically suspend the accrual of interest income for accounts that are contractually delinquent by more than three months unless collection is not doubtful. Cash payments on nonaccrual accounts, including finance charges, generally are applied to reduce the net investment balance. Once we conclude that the collection of all principal and interest is no longer doubtful, we resume the accrual of interest and recognize previously suspended interest income at the time either a) the loan becomes contractually current through payment according to the original terms of the loan, or b) if the loan has been modified, following a period of performance under the terms of the modification.
For contracts where revenue is recognized over time, we recognize changes in estimated contract revenues, costs and profits using the cumulative catch-up method of accounting. This method recognizes the cumulative effect of changes on current and prior periods with the impact of the change from inception-to-date recorded in the current period. Anticipated losses on contracts are recognized in full in the period in which the losses become probable and estimable.
In 2018, 2017 and 2016, our cumulative catch-up adjustments increased segment profit by $196 million, $5 million and $83 million, respectively, and net income by $149 million, $3 million and $52 million, respectively ($0.59, $0.01 and $0.19 per diluted share, respectively). In 2018, we recognized revenue from performance obligations satisfied in prior periods of approximately $190 million, which related to changes in profit booking rates that impacted revenue.
For 2018, 2017 and 2016, gross favorable adjustments totaled $249 million, $92 million and $106 million, respectively. The 2018 favorable adjustments included $145 million, largely related to overhead rate improvements and risk retirements associated with contracts in the Bell segment. In 2018, 2017 and 2016, gross unfavorable adjustments totaled $53 million, $87 million and $23 million, respectively. The 2017 unfavorable adjustments included $44 million related to the Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicle program related to inefficiencies resulting from various production issues during the ramp up and subsequent production.
Contract Assets and Liabilities
Under ASC 606, contract assets arise from contracts when revenue is recognized over time and the amount of revenue recognized exceeds the amount billed to the customer. These amounts are included in contract assets until the right to payment is no longer conditional on events other than the passage of time. At December 29, 2018, contract assets are included in Other current assets in the Consolidated Balance Sheet. Contract liabilities, which are primarily included in Other current liabilities, include deposits, largely from our commercial aviation customers, and billings in excess of revenue recognized.
The incremental costs of obtaining a contract with a customer that is expected to be recovered is expensed as incurred when the period to be benefitted is one year or less.
Accounts Receivable, Net
Accounts receivable, net includes amounts billed to customers where the right to payment is unconditional. We maintain an allowance for doubtful accounts to provide for the estimated amount of accounts receivable that will not be collected, which is based on an assessment of customer creditworthiness, historical payment experience, the age of outstanding receivable and collateral value, if any.
Cash and Equivalents
Cash and equivalents consist of cash and short-term, highly liquid investments with original maturities of three months or less.
Inventories are stated at the lower of cost or estimated net realizable value. We value our inventories generally using the first-in, first-out (FIFO) method or the last-in, first-out (LIFO) method for certain qualifying inventories where LIFO provides a better matching of costs and revenues. We determine costs for our commercial helicopters on an average cost basis by model considering the expended and estimated costs for the current production release.
Property, Plant and Equipment
Property, plant and equipment are recorded at cost and are depreciated primarily using the straight-line method. We capitalize expenditures for improvements that increase asset values and extend useful lives. Property, plant and equipment are reviewed for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount of the asset may not be recoverable. If the carrying value of the asset exceeds the sum of the undiscounted expected future cash flows, the asset is written down to fair value.
Goodwill and Intangible Assets
Goodwill represents the excess of the consideration paid for the acquisition of a business over the fair values assigned to intangible and other net assets of the acquired business. Goodwill and intangible assets deemed to have indefinite lives are not amortized but are subject to an annual impairment test. We evaluate the recoverability of these assets in the fourth quarter of each year or more frequently if events or changes in circumstances, such as declines in sales, earnings or cash flows, or material adverse changes in the business climate, indicate a potential impairment.
For our impairment test, we calculate the fair value of each reporting unit and indefinite-lived intangible asset primarily using discounted cash flows. A reporting unit represents the operating segment unless discrete financial information is prepared and reviewed by segment management for businesses one level below that operating segment, in which case such component is the reporting unit. In certain instances, we have aggregated components of an operating segment into a single reporting unit based on similar economic characteristics. For the goodwill impairment test, the discounted cash flows incorporate assumptions for revenue growth, operating margins and discount rates that represent our best estimates of current and forecasted market conditions, cost structure, anticipated net cost reductions, and the implied rate of return that we believe a market participant would require for an investment in a business having similar risks and characteristics to the reporting unit being assessed. If the estimated fair value of the reporting unit or indefinite-lived intangible asset exceeds the carrying value, there is no impairment. Otherwise, an impairment loss is recognized for the amount by which the carrying value exceeds the estimated fair value.
Acquired intangible assets with finite lives are subject to amortization. These assets are reviewed for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount of the asset may not be recoverable. Amortization of these intangible assets is recognized over their estimated useful lives using a method that reflects the pattern in which the economic benefits of the intangible assets are consumed or otherwise realized. Approximately 84% of our gross intangible assets are amortized based on the cash flow streams used to value the assets, with the remaining assets amortized using the straight-line method.
Finance receivables primarily include loans provided to purchasers of new and pre-owned Textron Aviation aircraft and Bell helicopters. Finance receivables are generally recorded at the amount of outstanding principal less allowance for losses.
We maintain an allowance for losses on finance receivables at a level considered adequate to cover inherent losses in the portfolio based on management’s evaluation. For larger balance accounts specifically identified as impaired, a reserve is established based on comparing the expected future cash flows, discounted at the finance receivable’s effective interest rate, or the fair value of the underlying collateral if the finance receivable is collateral dependent, to its carrying amount. The expected future cash flows consider collateral value; financial performance and liquidity of our borrower; existence and financial strength of guarantors; estimated recovery costs, including legal expenses; and costs associated with the repossession and eventual disposal of collateral. When there is a range of potential outcomes, we perform multiple discounted cash flow analyses and weight the potential outcomes based on their relative likelihood of occurrence. The evaluation of our portfolio is inherently subjective, as it requires estimates, including the amount and timing of future cash flows expected to be received on impaired finance receivables and the estimated fair value of the underlying collateral, which may differ from actual results. While our analysis is specific to each individual account, critical factors included in this analysis include industry valuation guides, age and physical condition of the collateral, payment history and existence and financial strength of guarantors.
We also establish an allowance for losses to cover probable but specifically unknown losses existing in the portfolio. This allowance is established as a percentage of non-recourse finance receivables, which have not been identified as requiring specific reserves. The percentage is based on a combination of factors, including historical loss experience, current delinquency and default trends, collateral values and both general economic and specific industry trends.
Finance receivables are charged off at the earlier of the date the collateral is repossessed or when no payment has been received for six months, unless management deems the receivable collectible. Repossessed assets are recorded at their fair value, less estimated cost to sell.
Pension and Postretirement Benefit Obligations
We maintain various pension and postretirement plans for our employees globally. These plans include significant pension and postretirement benefit obligations, which are calculated based on actuarial valuations. Key assumptions used in determining these obligations and related expenses include expected long-term rates of return on plan assets, discount rates and healthcare cost projections. We evaluate and update these assumptions annually in consultation with third-party actuaries and investment advisors. We also make assumptions regarding employee demographic factors such as retirement patterns, mortality, turnover and rate of compensation increases.
For our year-end measurement, our defined benefit plan assets and obligations are measured as of the month-end date closest to our fiscal year-end. We recognize the overfunded or underfunded status of our pension and postretirement plans in the Consolidated Balance Sheets and recognize changes in the funded status of our defined benefit plans in comprehensive income in the year in which they occur. Actuarial gains and losses that are not immediately recognized as net periodic pension cost are recognized as a component of other comprehensive income (loss) (OCI) and are amortized into net periodic pension cost in future periods.
Derivatives and Hedging Activities
We are exposed to market risk primarily from changes in currency exchange rates and interest rates. We do not hold or issue derivative financial instruments for trading or speculative purposes. To manage the volatility relating to our exposures, we net these exposures on a consolidated basis to take advantage of natural offsets. For the residual portion, we enter into various derivative transactions pursuant to our policies in areas such as counterparty exposure and hedging practices. Credit risk related to derivative financial instruments is considered minimal and is managed by requiring high credit standards for counterparties and through periodic settlements of positions.
All derivative instruments are reported at fair value in the Consolidated Balance Sheets. Designation to support hedge accounting is performed on a specific exposure basis. For financial instruments qualifying as cash flow hedges, we record changes in the fair value of derivatives (to the extent they are effective as hedges) in OCI, net of deferred taxes. Changes in fair value of derivatives not qualifying as hedges are recorded in earnings.
Foreign currency denominated assets and liabilities are translated into U.S. dollars. Adjustments from currency rate changes are recorded in the cumulative translation adjustment account in shareholders’ equity until the related foreign entity is sold or substantially liquidated. We use foreign currency financing transactions to effectively hedge long-term investments in foreign operations with the same corresponding currency. Foreign currency gains and losses on the hedge of the long-term investments are recorded in the cumulative translation adjustment account.
We accrue for product liability claims and related defense costs when a loss is probable and reasonably estimable. Our estimates are generally based on the specifics of each claim or incident and our best estimate of the probable loss using historical experience.
Environmental Liabilities and Asset Retirement Obligations
Liabilities for environmental matters are recorded on a site-by-site basis when it is probable that an obligation has been incurred and the cost can be reasonably estimated. We estimate our accrued environmental liabilities using currently available facts, existing technology, and presently enacted laws and regulations, all of which are subject to a number of factors and uncertainties. Our environmental liabilities are not discounted and do not take into consideration possible future insurance proceeds or significant amounts from claims against other third parties.
We have incurred asset retirement obligations primarily related to costs to remove and dispose of underground storage tanks and asbestos materials used in insulation, adhesive fillers and floor tiles. There is no legal requirement to remove these items, and there currently is no plan to remodel the related facilities or otherwise cause the impacted items to require disposal. Since these asset retirement obligations are not estimable, there is no related liability recorded in the Consolidated Balance Sheets.
For our assurance-type warranty programs, we estimate the costs that may be incurred and record a liability in the amount of such costs at the time product revenues are recognized. Factors that affect this liability include the number of products sold, historical costs per claim, length of warranty period, contractual recoveries from vendors and historical and anticipated rates of warranty claims, including production and warranty patterns for new models. We assess the adequacy of our recorded warranty liability periodically and adjust the amounts as necessary. Additionally, we may establish a warranty liability related to the issuance of aircraft service bulletins for aircraft no longer covered under the limited warranty programs.
Research and Development Costs
Our customer-funded research and development costs are charged directly to the related contracts, which primarily consist of U.S. Government contracts. In accordance with government regulations, we recover a portion of company-funded research and development costs through overhead rate charges on our U.S. Government contracts. Research and development costs that are not reimbursable under a contract with the U.S. Government or another customer are charged to expense as incurred. Company-funded research and development costs were $643 million, $634 million and $677 million in 2018, 2017 and 2016, respectively, and are included in cost of sales.
The provision for income tax expense is calculated on reported Income from continuing operations before income taxes based on current tax law and includes, in the current period, the cumulative effect of any changes in tax rates from those used previously in determining deferred tax assets and liabilities. Tax laws may require items to be included in the determination of taxable income at different times from when the items are reflected in the financial statements. Deferred tax balances reflect the effects of temporary differences between the financial reporting carrying amounts of assets and liabilities and their tax bases, as well as from net operating losses and tax credit carryforwards, and are stated at enacted tax rates in effect for the year taxes are expected to be paid or recovered.
Deferred tax assets represent tax benefits for tax deductions or credits available in future years and require certain estimates and assumptions to determine whether it is more likely than not that all or a portion of the benefit will not be realized. The recoverability of these future tax deductions and credits is determined by assessing the adequacy of future expected taxable income from all sources, including the future reversal of existing taxable temporary differences, taxable income in carryback years, estimated future taxable income and available tax planning strategies. Should a change in facts or circumstances lead to a change in judgment about the ultimate recoverability of a deferred tax asset, we record or adjust the related valuation allowance in the period that the change in facts and circumstances occurs, along with a corresponding increase or decrease in income tax expense.
We record tax benefits for uncertain tax positions based upon management’s evaluation of the information available at the reporting date. To be recognized in the financial statements, the tax position must meet the more-likely-than-not threshold that the position will be sustained upon examination by the tax authority based on technical merits assuming the tax authority has full knowledge of all relevant information. For positions meeting this recognition threshold, the benefit is measured as the largest amount of benefit that meets the more-likely-than-not threshold to be sustained. We periodically evaluate these tax positions based on the latest available information. For tax positions that do not meet the threshold requirement, we recognize net tax-related interest and penalties for continuing operations in income tax expense.
New Accounting Standards Not Yet Adopted
In February 2016, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued ASU No. 2016-02, Leases, requiring lessees to recognize all leases with a term greater than 12 months on the balance sheet as right-of-use assets and lease liabilities. Under current accounting guidance, we are not required to recognize assets and liabilities arising from operating leases on the balance sheet. In 2018, the FASB issued additional guidance to provide an alternate transition method for adoption. Under this method, entities may record the balance sheet amounts and the cumulative effect of adopting the standard to retained earnings as of the effective date without adjustment to comparative periods. This new standard becomes effective for us at the beginning of 2019 and will be adopted using this alternate transition method.
At the adoption date, approximately $300 million of right-of-use assets and lease liabilities will be recognized related to our operating leases. The cumulative transition adjustment to retained earnings resulting from the adoption is not significant. We plan to elect the practical expedients permitted under the transition guidance within the new standard, which among other things, allows us to carryforward the historical lease classification and allows hindsight when evaluating options within a contract, resulting in the extension of the lease term for certain of our existing leases at the adoption date. We have updated the accounting policies affected by this standard, redesigned our related internal controls over financial reporting and are expanding the disclosures to be included in our first quarter 2019 Form 10-Q to meet the new requirements. The standard has no impact on our liquidity or our debt-covenant compliance under our current agreements, and is not expected to have any significant impact on our results of operations.
In June 2016, the FASB issued ASU No. 2016-13, Financial Instruments – Credit Losses. For most financial assets, such as trade and other receivables, loans and other instruments, this standard changes the current incurred loss model to a forward-looking expected credit loss model, which generally will result in the earlier recognition of allowances for losses. The new standard is effective for our company at the beginning of 2020. Entities are required to apply the provisions of the standard through a cumulative-effect adjustment to retained earnings as of the effective date. We are currently evaluating the impact of the standard on our consolidated financial statements.