Darden Restaurants Inc. set itself apart in late 2008 by not doing something many of its competitors were forced to do—namely, taking goodwill impairment charges. The casual-dining company, based in Orlando, Fla., said Dec. 23 that after an evaluation of the company’s goodwill, or the value of such intangible assets as a brand name, no charges would be needed. Other companies have been less fortunate, however. At least five restaurant companies already have reduced their goodwill ...

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