|DESCRIPTION OF BUSINESS AND BASIS OF PRESENTATION
Moody’s is a provider of (i) credit ratings and assessment services; (ii) credit, capital markets and economic research, data and analytical tools; (iii) software solutions that support financial risk management activities; (iv) quantitatively derived credit scores; (v) learning solutions and certification services; and (vi) company information and business intelligence products. Moody’s reports in two reportable segments: MIS and MA.
MIS, the credit rating agency, publishes credit ratings and provides assessment services on a wide range of debt obligations and the entities that issue such obligations in markets worldwide. Revenue is primarily derived from the originators and issuers of such transactions who use MIS ratings in the distribution of their debt issues to investors. Additionally, MIS earns revenue from certain non-ratings-related operations which consist primarily of financial instrument pricing services in the Asia-Pacific region, revenue from ICRA’s non-ratings operations and revenue from providing ESG research, data and assessments. The revenue from these operations is included in the MIS Other LOB and is not material to the results of the MIS segment.
MA provides financial intelligence and analytical tools to assist businesses in making decisions. MA’s portfolio of solutions consists of specialized research, data, software, and professional services, which are assembled to support the financial analysis and risk management activities of institutional customers worldwide.
These interim financial statements have been prepared in accordance with the instructions to Form 10-Q and should be read in conjunction with the Company’s consolidated financial statements and related notes in the Company’s 2019 annual report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC on February 24, 2020. The results of interim periods are not necessarily indicative of results for the full year or any subsequent period. In the opinion of management, all adjustments (including normal recurring accruals) considered necessary for a fair presentation of financial position, results of operations and cash flows at the dates and for the periods presented have been included. The year-end consolidated balance sheet data was derived from audited financial statements, but does not include all disclosures required by accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.
Certain reclassifications have been made to prior period amounts to conform to the current presentation.
Adoption of New Accounting Standards
On January 1, 2020, the Company adopted ASU No. 2016-13, “Financial Instruments—Credit Losses (Topic 326): Measurement of Credit Losses on Financial Instruments.” The Company has implemented policies and procedures in compliance with the “expected credit loss” impairment model, which included (1) refinement of the grouping of receivables with similar risk characteristics; and (2) processes to identify information that can be used to develop reasonable and supportable forecasts of factors that could affect the collectability of the reported amount of the receivable. As the Company's accounts receivable are short-term in nature, the adoption of this ASU did not have a material impact to the Company's allowance for bad debts or its policies and procedures for determining the allowance. Refer to Note 2 for further information on how the Company determines its reserves for expected credit losses. The Company recorded a $2 million cumulative-effect adjustment to retained earnings to increase its allowance for credit losses upon adoption.
On January 1, 2020, the Company adopted ASU No. 2018-15, “Intangibles—Goodwill and Other—Internal-Use Software (Subtopic 350-40): Customer’s Accounting for Implementation Costs Incurred in a Cloud Computing Arrangement that is a Service Contract.” This ASU requires implementation costs incurred by customers in cloud computing arrangements (i.e., hosting arrangements) to be capitalized under the same provisions of authoritative guidance for internal-use software, and amortized over the non-cancellable term of the cloud computing arrangements plus any option renewal periods that are reasonably certain to be exercised by the customer or for which the exercise is controlled by the service provider. The Company will be required to present the amortization of capitalized implementation costs in the same line item in the statement of operations as the fees associated with the hosting service (i.e. operating and SG&A expense) and classify the related payments in the statement of cash flows in the same manner as payments made for fees associated with the hosting service (i.e. cash flows from operating activities). This ASU also requires capitalization of implementation costs in the balance sheet to be consistent with the location of prepayment of fees for the hosting element (i.e. within other current assets or other assets). The Company adopted this ASU prospectively to all implementation costs incurred after the date of adoption and it did not have a material impact on the Company's current financial statements. The future impact to the Company's financial statements will relate to the aforementioned classification of these capitalized costs and related amortization.
In March 2020, FASB issued ASU No. 2020-04, "Facilitation of the Effects of Reference Rate Reform on Financial Reporting". The ASU provides temporary optional expedients and exceptions to the U.S. GAAP guidance on contract modifications and hedge accounting to ease the financial reporting burdens related to the expected market transition from the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) and other interbank offered rates to alternative reference rates. This guidance was effective beginning on March 12, 2020, and the Company may elect to apply the amendments prospectively through December 31, 2022 as the transition from LIBOR is completed.
The Company is closely monitoring the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on all aspects of its business. While the Company has selectively reopened certain of its offices, Moody’s continues to require remote work for most employees globally. The Company continues to monitor regional developments relating to the COVID-19 pandemic to inform decisions on office re-openings.
The Company experienced disruption in certain sectors of its business beginning late in the first quarter of 2020 resulting from market volatility associated with the COVID-19 crisis. However, at the date of the filing of this quarterly report on Form 10-Q, the Company is unable to predict either the potential near-term or longer-term impact that the COVID-19 crisis may have on its financial position and operating results due to numerous uncertainties regarding the duration and severity of the crisis. As a result, it is reasonably possible that the Company could experience material impacts including, but not limited to: reductions in revenue and cash flows; additional credit losses related to accounts receivables; asset impairment charges; and changes in the funded status of defined benefit pension plans. While it is reasonably possible that the COVID-19 crisis will have a material impact on the results of operations and cash flows of the Company in the near term, Moody's believes that it has adequate liquidity to maintain its operations with minimal disruption and to maintain compliance with its debt covenants.
In the nine months ended September 30, 2020, in order to maximize liquidity and to increase available cash on hand through this period of uncertainty, the Company increased its long-term borrowings by $700 million and began borrowing under its CP Program as more fully discussed in Note 17. At September 30, 2020, the Company had repaid all CP outstanding. In addition, the Company reduced discretionary spending, including temporarily suspending its share repurchase program beginning late in the first quarter of 2020 and spanning through the third quarter. The Company anticipates resuming its share repurchase program in the fourth quarter of 2020.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”) was enacted on March 27, 2020 in the United States. The Company is utilizing certain provisions in the CARES Act and other IRS guidance which permit the deferral of certain income and payroll tax remittances.