When will quicken Mac Finally get Custom Asset classes?

vahe guzelimian
vahe guzelimian Mac Beta Beta
edited May 14 in Investing (Mac)
We've been waiting for this feature for years. It should be top priority since the sesible way to invest is by asset allocation. You can only accomplish this if you have the ability to assign custom asset classes such as REITs, US Small Value, Emerging Countries, etc. Very easy to program this feature.

Answers

  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    No one on this site can answer your question about when a (any) new feature will be released. There's a long, long list of enhancements users have asked for, and the developers slowly chip away at them. What's coming next, or when, only the developers know -- and they don't say in case things slip or priorities change.

    If you haven't done so previously, please visit this Idea post requesting this enhancement, and add your vote (click the triangle in the yellow box beneath the first post).
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • Custom asset class should be at the top of the list. Anyone who invest uses custom asset classes like REITs and Resources, International small value. And if they don't they should, LOL!
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Custom asset class should be at the top of the list.
    The last time I checked, every person that wanted a given feature has felt that that feature should be at the top of the list.

    And this is another common statement:
    Very easy to program this feature.
    As a programmer with over 30 years of experience, I would like to know how you got access to the code and did a through evaluation of the time it takes.  Without that I can't see how you know how much effortt this is going to take.  Some of the hardest problems I have ever had to solve started with a statement like "This should be very easy...".
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  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    I used to think custom asset classes were what we needed, but now I'm not so sure. With the 6.3 release, we see the future of Quicken Mac is using asset class breakdowns from a third-party source (Morningstar?) to provide a more accurate classification than users picking one asset class. For instance, if I have a fund which has 60% stocks, 38% bonds and 2% money market, Quicken will apply those percentages to my holdings in that fund. This methodology exists today in the new Dashboard screen asset class card; the product manager has promised it will be applied in a future release to the Portfolio screen when grouped by asset class. If Quicken allows us to create our own asset classes, then it won't be able to apply such breakdowns. Custom asset classes may be needed in a few cases (cryptocurrency, for instance, is currently missing).

    I think what's really missing are things I used to think would be part of an asset allocation, but actually aren't: Sector Allocations. These are shown on the investing.quicken.com pages which display when you click on Security Overview. On these pages, investments are classified by sectors like Financial Services, Real Estate, Healthcare, Utilities, Energy, Technology, etc. I'd also like the typical 3x3 breakdown: for stocks, it's large cap, mid-cap and small-cap on one axis and value, blend or growth on the other; for bonds it's short-term, intermediate, and long-term one one axis and low, mid, and high quality on the other. Since Quicken is getting this data from their quotes supplier, why not allow us to see all these different allocations of our investments?
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • There are two issues here, jacobs. One is the Morningstar breakdowns of funds in terms of asset categories within a fund, but I also want to define my own categories for asset categories. Both results would be useful to track asset allocation. I don't know exactly how complex the code would be for this, but as a former programmer, it's a LOT easier than other types of code like stock splits, mergers, and bill paying.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    @vahe guzelimian I'm pretty sure they will not implement two independent sets of asset allocations, from Morningstar and custom user-entered allocations. As I understand it works in Quicken windows, the Morningstar data populates the database, and this information is viewable and editable by users. I think that's the direction they are likely to go with Quicken Mac. That would mean for each security, you could simply accept whatever asset allocation comes from Morningstar or edit/enter it as they choose. I do think as part of this that they will need to allow users to enter custom asset classes.

    I don't fully understand how Morningstar's limited set of classes work well for everyone, and what Quicken Mac shows as its default categories don't quite align with Morningstar (or whatever provider Quicken is using the for investing.quicken.com pages). Morningstar shows 6 asset classes: Domestic stock, International stock, Domestic Bond, International Bond, Cash and Other. But Quicken Mac splits domestic stocks into large cap and small cap, and cash into money market and cash. And while there's large cap and small cap domestic stocks, why is there no class for mid-cap stocks? There's nothing for cryptocurrencies, which Quicken is working towards tracking. Investments in a REIT (real estate) fund gets lumped in with stocks rather than having its own class. Investments in precious metals also gets lumped in with stocks. I don't know if there is an industry-wide standard of only using a set small number of asset classes, or if every firm does it differently.

    My other pitch would be that they also add sector allocations, since they seem to have that data. It would add another dimension of evaluating one's holdings. 
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • The windows version lets you create custome asset categories
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    @vahe guzelimian You've shown a dropdown for Type, but what we're interested in is the next thing down in that box, the Asset Class. In the Windows version you can check a box whether or not you want it to use download asset class information or you can define the asset mix yourself. In addition, you can create your own asset classes. (I'm not sure what the difference is between Type and Asset Class in Quicken Windows; I would think the things you show for International Small, Large, Value, etc. would be Asset Classes, not different Types as shown.)

    (Your screenshot also illustrates the potential pitfalls of making these fields user-configurable, as it seems you have 6 Types which are all "Inter'l Small", and you have International abbreviated as "Inter", "Interl" and "Inter'l", which makes creating duplicates of the same thing spelled differently more likely.)
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 2021
    jacobs said:
    (I'm not sure what the difference is between Type and Asset Class in Quicken Windows
    Here is an example of the differences.
    Let say I pick the built-in one Mutual Fund:


    Now I pick the built-in Stock:


    So basically Type is the "type of security", CD, stock, mutual fund, ...

    Whereas Asset Class is what kind of assets that security invests in.

    jacobs said:
    (Your screenshot also illustrates the potential pitfalls of making these fields user-configurable, as it seems you have 6 Types which are all "Inter'l Small", and you have International abbreviated as "Inter", "Interl" and "Inter'l", which makes creating duplicates of the same thing spelled differently more likely.)
    There are in fact all kinds of pitfalls.  Example.  Quicken Windows has "predictions" on the return that is derived from handing that off to either MorningStar or in one case I think it is some kind of fixed calculation based on another third parties predictions as shown below.
     

    You can see where I have included a custom asset class of "Lending Club Note".  Quicken has no idea of what the return on a Lending Club Note is, and what's more there isn't any place in Quicken Windows where I can tell Quicken what that return is.  So what is it using for the return (and for that matter the risk)?
    I'm sort of guessing it uses "cash", but I really have no idea.

    The same kind of thing goes on with the X-Ray Portfolio from MorningStar.  It is great if your investment fall into what they track, and you agree with them of what asset classes (and by the way they use different terms and breakdowns) there are.  But as soon as you "customize" that information becomes more and more "off track".

    And this is what I was alluding to in my other comment.  Users tend to look at the surface problem (add a dialog to add in a name) and pronounce that a feature is easy to implement without understanding the ramifications or what it takes in code or connections and "definitions" that might have to be worked out with third parties and such.
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  • Yes, but no matter what you call it for the Mac version, I need custom asset or type of asset. I don't have that. In the windows version, I was able to accomplish what I needed with the Type of Asset that i ciustomized. I suppose if MOrningstar can do an x-ray of my funds and etf's then Asset Class would be a better choice. Your suggestions are very good and I might try them. Right now it ain't broke...
  • BTW, the reason I use Type of Security for my allocation categories in my Windows version is due to the fact that when I imported my very large Quicken 2007 Mac file with 100s of securities, the Asset Class for each security was imported by Quicken into Type on the Windows side. So Quicken chose it for me and I stayed with it. I did delete all those Int'l Small categories that sneaked in. Thanks for pointing it out.
  • New around here... but not new to Quicken (mainly on Mac but also Windows) going back to around 2002 or so. Trying out the Premier version of both Mac and Windows.

    Happy to see the ongoing effort to continue to develop the Mac version again. The investment analysis functionality is my primary interest and the reason I'm again trying the Mac version after giving up on it after the 2007 release.

    For me, a major point of interest would be to have the MorningStar portfolio x-ray functionality implemented on the Mac version. That probably won't cover all possible cases but I suspect it would handle quite a bit of the asset class-related needs for a lot of the user base.

    It would be extremely helpful to know if that is on the roadmap for the Mac version, if not an ETA. If there is no prospect of getting it on the Mac version I will most likely go the VM route with Parallels and a new version of Windows/Quicken Windows.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    @Chris Hanson Quicken almost never reveals what features are on the development roadmap, nor any timeline for when they will appear. So no one here can answer your question about whether the Portfolio X-Ray feature is planned for Quicken Mac.

    That said, the developers have recently started a multi-phase, iterative approach to improving the capabilities of Quicken Mac for users who want more investment analysis. As is written about above in this thread, version 6.3 in July introduced the investment Dashboard. The Quicken Mac product manager emphasized that this is only a first iteration, and that they have more features and functionality in this area on their roadmap.

    Part of the Dashboard was an Asset Allocation panel which for the first time did not pull its data from a single user-defined asset allocation for each security, but from a third-party (Morningstar, one would think) analysis of each security's holdings. Unfortunately, that implementation partially broke the asset allocation in the Portfolio view which many users have depended on, because the Portfolio allocation was not updated to use the security "x-ray" functionality used in the Dashboard panel. It also didn't include a user interface where one could see the imported asset allocations for each security, nor the ability to enter/edit those allocations. The product manager acknowledged those shortcomings and promised they will be addressed in future releases. So the 6.3 release was "two steps forward, one step back" -- or for some users "one step forward, two steps back" -- on the path towards more asset allocation information in Quicken Mac. I definitely expect to see some of these issues addressed over the next few releases.

    Assuming that they create features similar to Quicken Windows which allow users to see and interact with the downloaded asset allocation of each security, and to use the same data for both the Portfolio and Dashboard views, it will be a big step forward over the user-designated single asset class for securities we've had previously. Whether the next step down this road will include the full-fledged Morningstar Portfolio X-Ray service for Quicken Mac users is unknown. It would seem to be consistent with the CEO's promised goal of general feature parity between platforms. It might also be a good differentiator for Quicken Premier versus Quicken Deluxe, where there is currently no difference in the software between those two subscription levels on the Mac platform. 
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • jacobs: thanks for the comprehensive response. Your answer seems on target based on what I had observed and though I was hoping, I didn't really expect to get a glimpse into the roadmap in detail (but it never hurts to ask!).

    For now, I'll just keep doing what I have been doing in a spreadsheet to estimate asset allocation, although it is a very simplistic and limited approach for a partial collection of one group of funds. Nonetheless, having done that I have a bit of appreciation for the effort involved in creating the much more comprehensive approach that seems to be the goal, even if it will leverage the MorningStar portfolio x-ray capability.
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