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Income Taxes (Details) (USD $)
3 Months Ended 6 Months Ended
Apr. 30, 2011
Apr. 30, 2010
Apr. 30, 2011
Apr. 30, 2010
Oct. 31, 2010
Income Taxes          
Effective tax rate (as a percent) 20.30% 20.50% 20.70% 20.10%  
U.S. federal statutory income tax rate (as a percent)     35.00%    
Tax benefits resulting from reconciling items that decrease the effective tax rate $ 56,000,000 $ 47,000,000 $ 157,000,000 $ 139,000,000  
Tax benefits from restructuring and acquisition charges 53,000,000 80,000,000 112,000,000 134,000,000  
Tax benefit from the retroactive research and development credit 43,000,000        
Net tax expenses (benefits) with adjustments to prior year foreign income tax accruals and credits, settlement of tax audit matters, a valuation allowance release, and other miscellaneous discrete items   33,000,000   (5,000,000)  
Unrecognized tax benefits 1,900,000,000   1,900,000,000    
Unrecognized tax benefits that would affect effective tax rate if realized 1,200,000,000   1,200,000,000    
Accrued income tax payable for interest and penalties 182,000,000   182,000,000    
Net interest expense on net tax underpayments, net of tax 22,000,000   1,000,000    
Income tax examination, likelihood of no resolution period (in months)     12    
Income tax examination, likelihood of conclusion period (in months)     12    
Reasonably possible, reduction in existing unrecognized tax benefits within the next 12 months 246,000,000   246,000,000    
Number of foreign countries in which HP is subject to income taxes     80    
Income tax examination, additional tax payable 110,000,000   110,000,000    
Income tax examination, reduction in tax benefits 29,000,000   29,000,000    
Classification of current and long-term deferred tax assets and liabilities          
Current deferred tax assets 5,102,000,000   5,102,000,000   5,833,000,000
Current deferred tax liabilities (54,000,000)   (54,000,000)   (53,000,000)
Long-term deferred tax assets 2,241,000,000   2,241,000,000   2,070,000,000
Long-term deferred tax liabilities (5,225,000,000)   (5,225,000,000)   (5,239,000,000)
Total deferred tax assets net of deferred tax liabilities $ 2,064,000,000   $ 2,064,000,000   $ 2,611,000,000