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Seeking advice on use of Asset Accounts and Registers

Until I am more experienced in creating asset accounts for my investments in order to take advantage of Quicken’s robust reporting capacity, how can I create a simple “register’ for each account which will give me the month, quarter or year-end balance for that investment? And under the “new account” screen, what kind of account would I select?

For my simple purposes, I don’t (yet) find it necessary to download all the detailed activity from my brokerage firm for each of my investments (15 to 20 of them and about the same amount for my spouse). All I want to record is the value of a balance as of a particular calendar point in time and have that balance appear in a simple register carrying the identification of the asset account.

The resulting monthly or quarterly or yearly register entries would be manually created by me in the register noting the value increase or decrease of the balance over the previous period’s balance. I do not need the account to appear in any other report than my net worth statement, or I need to block it if it does.

I won’t use such a simple register to assess the success of the investment, just the record of its value. My financial adviser provides me the answers on strategy, performance, fees, etc., some of which I know would be available in a more full-blown utilization of Quicken’s asset management reporting in context of downloading the components of each investment’s statement.

Yes, I realize this simple register would likely be replaced in total when I do take the steps to fully utilize Quicken’s investment account management and reporting prowess.
But I need to get on with something simple for a net worth statement!
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Answers

  • q_lurker
    q_lurker SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    I would be inclined to still create the accounts as Investment account, either straight brokerage or retirement as applicable.  You do not need to associate these to real world brokerages or mutual fund families. 

    Within the accounts, I would lean to keeping them as straight cash, and adjusting the total on your chosen schedule using cash Deposits and Withdrawals.  I'd probably create a single category (since I like everything in a category) -- "InvAcct Adjustments", maybe.  Later, you might transition to using separate deposits for Dividends Received, Interest, or other parts you want to track.     
  • Storner
    Storner Member
    Does it make a difference which way I create the account – brokerage (which is the current creation) or retirement?

    You state I … “do not need to associate these to real world brokerages or mutual fund families.” I don’t know what that means or the consequence of the association to my overall goal of creating a simple balance register.

    As to your statement “I would lean to keeping them as straight cash, and adjusting the total on your chosen schedule using cash Deposits and Withdrawals.” Are there other alternatives to keeping them, wondering if not “straight cash” what other choices do I have?

    Thanks, q_luker!
  • Rocket J Squirrel
    Rocket J Squirrel SuperUser, Windows Beta ✭✭✭✭✭
    Regardless of the level of simplicity you seek, you will get the most out of Quicken by mimicking the real world as much as possible. Retirement accounts should be created as such, and taxable brokerage accounts should be created as such.
    Go ahead and download from your brokerage if that's an option. Then you won't be bothered by hand-entering transactions and Quicken will stay in sync with the broker.
    Now the good news for you is that Quicken recently introduced a new feature called "Simple Investing". This is a user preference under Investment Transactions. You must globally enable the feature there. Then you can enable or disable it for individual accounts. This feature provides a simplified view of your investment accounts without the usual transaction-by-transaction registers.
    Quicken user since version 2 for DOS, now using QWin Premier Subscription on Win10 Pro.
  • q_lurker
    q_lurker SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Storner said:
    Does it make a difference which way I create the account – brokerage (which is the current creation) or retirement?

    You state I … “do not need to associate these to real world brokerages or mutual fund families.” I don’t know what that means or the consequence of the association to my overall goal of creating a simple balance register.

    As to your statement “I would lean to keeping them as straight cash, and adjusting the total on your chosen schedule using cash Deposits and Withdrawals.” Are there other alternatives to keeping them, wondering if not “straight cash” what other choices do I have?

    Thanks, q_luker!
    If they are IRA or 401k type accounts, Quicken offers ways to track them different than regular (not retirement related) accounts.  Flow from your paycheck to a retirement account may be smoother, if applicable.  It may be 'challenging' to convert them at a later date.  Generally better (IMO) to get things as close to accurate as you can when starting out.  

    When you create a new account, Quicken tries to make it as easy as possible by leading you to connect the account with a participating financial institution.  Some users get flummoxed when they don't want that or it doesn't apply.  I was suggesting that as a simple 'balance' register, you would not want to go on the path Quicken tries to lead you. 

    Other than straight cash, some might try to use a fictitious security, and maybe record the change in value as change in the price of the security.  May be some other off-the-wall possibilities as well. 

     
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