Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)

Background and Basis of Presentation (Policies)

Background and Basis of Presentation (Policies)
3 Months Ended
Mar. 31, 2020
Organization, Consolidation and Presentation of Financial Statements [Abstract]  
Basis of Presentation Basis of PresentationThe condensed consolidated financial statements included herein are unaudited. Certain information and footnote disclosures normally included in annual financial statements prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States (“GAAP”) have been condensed or omitted pursuant to such rules and regulations for interim reporting. In the opinion of management, all adjustments of a normal and recurring nature necessary to state fairly the financial position and results of operations have been included. The results of operations are not necessarily indicative of the results to be expected for the full year. The accompanying unaudited condensed consolidated financial statements should be read in conjunction with the audited consolidated financial statements and related notes included in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2019.
Recently Issued Accounting Standards
Recently Adopted Accounting Standards
In June 2016, the FASB issued guidance that affects loans, trade receivables and any other financial assets that have the contractual right to receive cash. Under the new guidance, an entity is required to recognize expected credit losses rather than incurred losses for financial assets. The new guidance is effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2019 and interim periods within those fiscal years. The Company adopted the new guidance effective January 1, 2020, with no material impact to the Company’s consolidated financial position, results of operations or cash flows.
In August 2018, the FASB issued guidance which modifies certain disclosure requirements over fair value measurements. The guidance is effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2019, including all interim periods within that fiscal year. The Company adopted the new guidance effective January 1, 2020. The Company does not classify any of its derivative contracts as Level 3 assets or liabilities, nor did the Company have any transfers amongst fair value levels during the quarter ended March 31, 2020. As such, the guidance did not have an impact on the fair value measurement disclosures included in the Company’s consolidated financial statements.
In January 2017, the FASB issued guidance which eliminates the second step from the traditional two-step goodwill impairment test. Under current guidance, an entity performed the first step of the goodwill impairment test by comparing the fair value of a reporting unit with its carrying amount; if an impairment loss was indicated, the entity computed the implied fair value of goodwill to determine whether an impairment loss existed, and if so, the amount to recognize. Under the new guidance, an impairment loss is recognized for the amount by which the carrying amount exceeds the reporting unit’s fair value (the Step 1 test), with no further testing required. Any impairment loss recognized is limited to the amount of goodwill allocated to the reporting unit. The new guidance is effective for public companies that are Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) registrants for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2019, with early adoption permitted for goodwill impairment tests performed on testing dates after January 1, 2017. The Company adopted the new guidance on January 1, 2020, and will apply the guidance prospectively to its goodwill impairment tests.
Accounting Standards Not Yet Adopted
In December 2019, the FASB issued new guidance to simplify the accounting for income taxes by removing certain exceptions to the general principles and also simplification of areas such as franchise taxes, step-up in tax basis goodwill, separate entity financial statements and interim recognition of enactment of tax laws or rate changes. The new guidance is effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2020 and interim periods within those fiscal years, with early adoption permitted. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of this new guidance on its consolidated financial statements.
Fair Value Measurement
Restoration plan assets
The fair values of the Company’s restoration plan assets are determined through quoted prices in active markets. Restoration plan assets are assets held in a Rabbi trust to fund the obligations of the Company’s defined benefit supplementary retirement plans and include various stock and fixed income mutual funds. See Note 15 to these condensed consolidated financial statements regarding defined supplementary retirement plans. The Company’s restoration plan assets are included in other long-term assets on its condensed consolidated balance sheets. Gains and losses related to these investments are included in other expense, net in the Company’s condensed consolidated statements of income. Unrealized gains and losses associated with the underlying stock and fixed income mutual funds were immaterial as of March 31, 2020 and December 31, 2019, respectively.
Derivative contracts
Derivative assets and liabilities can be exchange-traded or traded over-the-counter (“OTC”). The Company generally values exchange-traded derivatives using models that calibrate to market transactions and eliminate timing differences between the closing price of the exchange-traded derivatives and their underlying instruments. OTC derivatives are valued using market transactions and other market evidence whenever possible, including market-based inputs to models, model calibration to market transactions, broker or dealer quotations or alternative pricing sources with reasonable levels of price transparency. When models are used, the selection of a particular model to value an OTC derivative depends on the contractual terms of, and specific risks inherent in, the instrument as well as the availability of pricing information in the market. The Company generally uses similar models to value similar instruments. Valuation models require a variety of inputs, including contractual terms, market prices and rates, forward curves, measures of volatility, and correlations of such inputs. For OTC derivatives that trade in liquid markets, such as forward contracts, swaps and options, model inputs can generally be corroborated by observable market data by correlation or other means, and model selection does not involve significant management judgment.
The Company has interest rate caps, natural gas swaps and cross-currency swaps that are fair valued using Level 2 inputs. In addition, the Company applies a credit valuation adjustment to reflect credit risk which is calculated based on credit default swaps. To the extent that the Company’s net exposure under a specific master agreement is an asset, the Company utilizes the counterparty’s default swap rate. If the net exposure under a specific master agreement is a liability, the Company utilizes a default swap rate comparable to PQ Group Holdings. The credit valuation adjustment is added to the discounted fair value to reflect the exit price that a market participant would be willing to receive to assume the Company’s liabilities or that a market participant would be willing to pay for the Company’s assets.