Share balance adjustment does not work

Marcus Libkind
Marcus Libkind Member ✭✭
edited November 2018 in Investing (Windows)
I used the mutual fund conversion option and the end result was an error in the share balance of .000016 shares. I assume that is a round-off error. I try to use Share Balance Adjustment to fix but the share balance does not change. I believe that it is creating a placeholder, but it doesn't show up at the bottom ... it shows zero place holders. What's happening?


  • Jim_Harman
    Jim_Harman SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November 2018
    Sometimes the placeholders do not show up at the bottom til you navigate elsewhere in quicken and/or exit and restart.

    Also if you have not already, go to Edit > Preferences > Investment Transactions and make sure Show hidden transactions is checked.
    QWin Premier subscription
  • mshiggins
    mshiggins SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited July 2018
    From C. D. Bales:

    @Marcus Libkind

    You did not provide your Quicken Edition, Version, and Release.

    I tested this in Q2017 (R16.2), Q2018 (R9.34) (and briefly in Q2012). The results in all versions were somewhat different, but none were 100 correct.

    Quicken seems to be flakey when it comes to some investment transactions with share quantities as small as yours - Adjust Share Balance being one of those problematic transactions, as does Shares Added.

    I tested with an adjustment of .000016 and got the same results as you report (in my test, I attempted to adjust a share balance of 100 to 100.000016).

    I had no problem seeing the resulting placeholder transaction in the Transaction List, but it did not do what it should: although the the placeholder showed a "holdings amount of 100.000016, the placeholder adjustment quantity was +0 shares. And the Portfolio and the Portfolio Value report still showed 100 shares (*1).

    When I increased the adjustment to .00016 shares, the placeholder appeared correctly in the Transaction List (showing an adjustment of +.00016 shares and a share balance of 100.00016) and the share balance was also correct in the Portfolio and the Portfolio Value report.

    As a workaround, I tried entering a Shares Removed transaction for all shares (100 shares in my test), followed by a Shares Added transaction for the desired number of shares (100.000016). The results were better: correct in the investment Transaction List, and almost correct in the Portfolio (*). But the Portfolio Value report still showed only 100 shares (*2).

    Given that an Adjust Share Balance transaction works by creating hidden Shares Added or Shares Removed transactions, perhaps it makes some crazy sense that the .000016 adjustment was handled incorrectly by the Adjust Share Balance transaction, and the 100.000016 Shares Added transaction was also handled incorrectly. When I tried a Shares Added transaction of .000016 shares for a brand new security, neither the transaction or the security ever showed up ... anywhere; except in the Transaction List, where the number of shares was changed from .000016 to zero.

    [ (*1) The Quicken "Reports only" Preference for "Decimal places for prices and shares" is set to 6.]

    [ (*2) Even the Portfolio does not appear quite right. The security total correctly shows 100.000016 shares, but the single lot (created by the Shares Added transaction) only shows 100 shares.]

    Quicken user since Q1999. Currently using QW2017.
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  • Marcus Libkind
    Marcus Libkind Member ✭✭
    edited July 2018
    Thank you for your time investigating the problem. It's nice to know that it was not me doing something wrong. My solution to the problem was to not use the mutual fund conversion transaction option, but instead I did a sell of the Class N shares and buy of the Class I shares. This eliminated the round off error. It might not track the long term ROI correctly, but I can live with that.

    FYI, I'm using Quicken Deluxe, 2018, R10.11.
  • q_lurker
    q_lurker SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited July 2018
    I used the mutual fund conversion option and the end result was an error in the share balance of .000016 shares. 
    Let's get back to the beginning of the problem.  The MF Conversion prompts you for the ending number of shares.  It is not clear from your data what value you put in or what number of shares were be converted to that new total you supplied.  

    Once Quicken has the new total number of shares, it still computes a conversion ratio and then applies that ratio to each lot.  There is a limited precision to that ratio and to the application of that ratio to each lot.  The result can be each lot of the new holding may be expressed to the 0.000001 of a share and that precision may be inconsistent with the precision used by your MF family.  This then results in some level of "round-off' error and your total shares may not end up matching the total you originally supplied.  

    My follow-up approach is to then go through each one of the generated Add Shares transactions and to reduce the precision for each transaction (each lot) to the precision used by the MF family, usually 0.001 or 0.0001 shares.  I will take note of any rounding I do that is borderline (should go one way, up or down, but is really close to going the other way.  When finished, if the total is not what the MF family specified, I will tweak those close ones the other way to fit. 

    At the end. all the generated (and edited) Add Shares transactions will reach the right total and there will be no need for an Adjust Share Balance transaction for a small number of shares.

    Your solution to use a Sell and Buy pairing would not be my choice as I like the accuracy of costs and applicable dates.

    As long as you are happy with your solution, carry on.

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