WARNING - American Express and EWC+

JBL in AZ
JBL in AZ Member ✭✭✭
I have just been notified that American Express is going to switch to Express Web Connect Plus. PLEASE don't do this! They have just fixed a problem with Bank of America that was reported over a month ago. We have not been able to download Chase Bank credit card transactions for over two months. In both cases the bank and recent switched to EWC+. The Chase problem is "still ongoing, no ETA for solution".
I don't see this going well for Quicken or AEX. Please hold off till the Chase problem, at least, is "chased" down, fixed and fully understood.
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Comments

  • Tom Young
    Tom Young SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Of course it's the Financial Institution that decides to make the switch, not Quicken.  But in any case the e-mail to users about the changeover, complete with promises about how much better it's going to be, has gone out.
  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Good luck with stopping it.  You would have better luck changing when the tides rise and fall.

    -splasher using Q continuously since 1996
    - Subscription Quicken - Win11 and QW2013 - Win11
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  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    SteveY said:
    Wouldn't it be nice if Quicken Inc could actually make such decision?
    But they can't.  They are just along for the ride.  The financial institutions decide what and when.

    And I will tell you something else, it seems to be Quicken Inc's attitude that if something works for "most people" they seem to be perfectly fine with that it doesn't work for everyone.  And going along with that, if it "mostly works" for a person that seems to be "good enough" for them to.  Like if the online balance has pending transactions in it when it shouldn't, and the person can still reconcile to the "statement balance" that is "good enough".

    In reality though, I doubt that for most of these problems they have any control over them anyways.  There isn't any doubt in my mind that the "pending transactions in the online balance" problem is on Chase's side.  They are sending the wrong information on the weekends and holidays for the checking account.

    As for the people when transactions don't download at all it isn't clear if it is the Quicken server, the Intuit server or the financial institution.  Given that some people have reported this on both Chase and Bank of America (both for some people) it most likely from Intuit back in the flow, but they seem to totally unable to fix this problem.  The way I figure it, if someone can't fix something for months the problem has to be either very difficult or they are incompetent.  Either way I don't look for a magical cure anytime soon.  And so, in this case Quicken Inc is pinned between a hard place and a rock.
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  • JBL in AZ
    JBL in AZ Member ✭✭✭
    I understand that Amex is driving the conversion, not Quicken; but here is where I see the EWC+ problems, and here is where I have an account I can make complaints on. I guess I should go see if there is any usable support place available on Amex.
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Don't get me wrong I certainly think that Quicken Inc has a part in this and should be working to fix it.
    I just don't think they have any control over the change and complaining to Amex (if possible) would be the better route, but I doubt it will make any difference.  Quicken customers are a very small percentage of any financial institution's customers and they have their own reasons for going to Express Web Connect + (actually FDX on their side, for all the "aggregators" they have to deal with).
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  • glw1861
    glw1861 Member ✭✭
    Great news. Now I will only have one account that works with Quicken. Chase doesn't, PNC doesn't, Citibank doesn't, Capital One doesn't....The value of Quicken is dropping as fast as FTX.
  • JRod
    JRod Member ✭✭✭✭
    I got the same announcement email about the Amex conversion to EWC+.  Not looking forward to the conversion and having yet another account messed up and with download issues.
  • JBL in AZ
    JBL in AZ Member ✭✭✭
    @glw1861: Actually, for me BofA has been working the past week or two, and Capitol One and Citibank are OK too.

    PNC has been working OK after the first three months following its purchase of my bank, BBVA. I have to use DirectConnect for my checking account and EWC for my two credit cards, but it works.

    As far as I know, Citi, CapOne, and PNC are not EWC+ and have announced no plans to do that.
  • Boatnmaniac
    Boatnmaniac SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2022
    JBL in AZ said:
    @glw1861: Actually, for me BofA has been working the past week or two, and Capitol One and Citibank are OK too.

    PNC has been working OK after the first three months following its purchase of my bank, BBVA. I have to use DirectConnect for my checking account and EWC for my two credit cards, but it works.

    As far as I know, Citi, CapOne, and PNC are not EWC+ and have announced no plans to do that.
    PNC:  Correct...not EWC+ (at least not yet).  Also correct that for the best connection experience checking/savings must be set up with DC...EWC connection has been problematic.  Credit cards must be set up with EWC.

    CITI:  Correct...not EWC+ (at least not yet).  I am not having any issues using the Citi Cards setup link (DC) for my credit cards.  But Citi has a long history of EWC issues when using Citibank setup link.  

    CAP ONE:  My Cap One credit card is set up with EWC+.  I don't know about other types of accounts but I would be a bit surprised if EWC+ is not cut in across the board with most types of accounts.  Not sure when that change occurred but I seem to recall a while back (maybe 1-1/2 to 2 yrs ago?) it was announced Cap One was upgrading their security system and that we would need to reauthorize with Cap One because they would be controlling the access process via their servers and no longer via Quicken/Intuit.  I don't think it was called EWC+ at that time.  I never had much of an issue with the reauthorization and very rarely have any download issues with Cap One but I know others, especially last year and earlier this year, have.
    glw1861 said:
    Great news. Now I will only have one account that works with Quicken. Chase doesn't, PNC doesn't, Citibank doesn't, Capital One doesn't....The value of Quicken is dropping as fast as FTX.
    Your profile shows you have not sought any assistance in this Community in resolving your download issues with Chase, PNC, Citibank and Cap One.  If you would like some assistance, I suggest you start new threads specific to each one of these.  The causes and solutions might be very different from each other so it is best to do one thread for each one.

    (Quicken Classic Premier Subscription: R55.15 on Windows 11)

  • JBL in AZ
    JBL in AZ Member ✭✭✭
    > @Boatnmaniac said:
    > CAP ONE:  My Cap One credit card is set up with EWC+.  I don't know about other types of accounts but I would be a bit surprised if EWC+ is not cut in across the board with most types of accounts. 

    I just checked, and though I had never noticed it, my CapOne credit card account IS EWC+, and I've not had trouble with it. Quelle surprise.
    Meanwhile, my Amex CC account has downloaded nothing since 11/21 using EWC, even though it shows a $480 difference between my bottom line and theirs; so now I have a whole new thing to chase down.
  • Boatnmaniac
    Boatnmaniac SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    JBL in AZ said:
    > @Boatnmaniac said:
    > CAP ONE:  My Cap One credit card is set up with EWC+.  I don't know about other types of accounts but I would be a bit surprised if EWC+ is not cut in across the board with most types of accounts. 

    I just checked, and though I had never noticed it, my CapOne credit card account IS EWC+, and I've not had trouble with it. Quelle surprise.
    Meanwhile, my Amex CC account has downloaded nothing since 11/21 using EWC, even though it shows a $480 difference between my bottom line and theirs; so now I have a whole new thing to chase down.
    Yeah, I think Cap One might have been the very first one to cut in EWC+ (even before Schwab) but it wasn't called EWC+ back then.  I, too, was surprised to see that my Cap One card now shows EWC+.

    I don't have an Amex CC (that is managed by Amex) so I am not affected by this transition.  But the issue you describe sounds similar to that of the issues some have had with the EWC+ transitions of Chase and BofA, as well as Discover's transition from DC to EWC.  In those cases, some users have posted that restoring a backup file from just before the reauthorization took place and then repeating the reauthorization process resolved the issue for them.  Have you tried doing that?  (Be sure to back up your current data file before attempting to do this.  Also, in the restored file, before attempting to reauthorize, make sure to note what the account's Opening Balance is...maybe enter it into the Memo field...because reauthorization has sometimes changed the amount of the Opening Balance transaction.)

    (Quicken Classic Premier Subscription: R55.15 on Windows 11)

  • JBL in AZ
    JBL in AZ Member ✭✭✭
    edited December 2022
    @Boatnmaniac said:
    > I don't have an Amex CC (that is managed by Amex) so I am not affected by this transition.  But the issue you describe sounds similar to that of the issues some have had with the EWC+ transitions of Chase and BofA, as well as Discover's transition from DC to EWC.

    Amex hasn't switched yet -- they just announced that they're going to.
    Chase has been broken for a couple months; Quicken support posts here weekly that they're working on it with no ETA.
    BofA had a similar thread; my problem with it apparently resolved itself; yesterday Quicken support posted here that the problem had been fixed.

    > In those cases, some users have posted that restoring a backup file from just before the reauthorization took place and then repeating the reauthorization process resolved the issue for them.  Have you tried doing that?  (Be sure to back up your current data file before attempting to do this.  Also, in the restored file, before attempting to reauthorize, make sure to note what the account's Opening Balance is...maybe enter it into the Memo field...because reauthorization has sometimes changed the amount of the Opening Balance transaction.)

    Oh, I really don't want to muck around with that kind of thing. I don't know when it was reauthorized. I had enough of that [Removed - Language] going on when I had to resync my BBVA bank stuff (one checking, two CCs) with PNC when they bought BBVA.

    (Deluxe 45.13 on Win10)
  • joekivel
    joekivel Member ✭✭✭
    edited December 2022
    Received a notice a few days ago announcing that another financial institution is ending Quicken Direct Connect. AE now joins Chase & BOA in eliminating two-way transactions that were available with direct connect and adopting 'download only' EWC+.

    Anyone using Quicken to pay bills from checking accounts at the aforementioned banks will no longer be able to do so.

    [Removed - Rant]
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    I think one has to put this all in perspective.

    The conversion for Capital One didn't go over without anyone reporting problems.  Just the opposite.  It was one that had a very long thread reporting errors.  Does that mean everyone had problems?
    Not at all.  I also believe when people cut over had a lot to do with that.  I think I have seen a trend that the people that wait as long as they can tend to have less problems with the cutover (but not waiting till the cutoff date is past).

    Another thing I see depends on what kind of accounts one has.  Anyone with a loan account being downloaded should assume it is going to fail in my opinion.  On the other hand, it seems like they are learning, or Chase is much better than Schwab in this.  Schwab was the first that had investment accounts, and they had problems with sending the right "security actions", but Chase didn't seem to have the same problem.

    A bit of a surprise is the processing of the online balance/pending transactions where it behaves differently (wrong) for Express Web Connect + at times (Chase/checking account/weekends/holidays) whereas it was correct on Direct Connect.  One would think these would be the same because with both protocols the financial institution is the one retrieving the data and putting it into the returned data, there isn't any "scraping" that might be wrong in Intuit's part of the process.

    And then there is the people that aren't getting any transactions.  This one is really strange in that it is happening when most people are getting the transactions and that they haven't found a fix for it yet.  One theory that has a one person trying and it fixed it for them is that one of the updates for the switch over caused corruption in the data file that is preventing the downloading from working correctly.  That would be a reason why the people that waited fared better than an early adopter.  That one person restored from a 2-month-old backup and rebuilt, and it worked for them.

    So, maybe future conversions will be better.

    Another thing that surprised me, that I think in a way was over engineered is that actual switch over code they put in.

    Normally when you switch connection types you always risk duplicate transactions because the transaction unique Ids change.  This would certainly be true for Express Web Connect + which uses completely different unique Ids.  But for the most part this didn't happen, why?  It is clear to me that they put in special code to try to match the old transactions to the new.  And it works for the most part, but it did mess up for me for a few transfers where the deposit in one account was a few days earlier than the withdraw in the other account.

    We (SuperUsers) have been dealing with duplicates forever and know quite well how to get people to clean them up.  It seems "risky" to try to automate this, and the fact that people had go down a flow like Add Account instead of Update to get it to work bears out why it might have been better not to try to make it "easier" on the users as far as duplicates are concerned.  This might even be at the core of the problem with "transactions not downloading".  It might be they are downloaded, but by mistake thought to be duplicates and never shown.

    For what it is worth, yes, I had to clean up some of the transactions after the switch over, but it has been working for me since time (Chase with checking, credit cards, and investment accounts) with exception of the checking/online balance pending problem, that doesn't really affect me since I have very few transactions in the checking account and almost none on the weekend.

    Oh, and one more note there has been a bug in Quicken for a very long time where they opening balance was being changed when it shouldn't have.  This bug amplified the problems people had during the cut over. That is sometimes the way, you leave a bug unfixed, and it comes back to bite you.
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  • SteveY
    SteveY Member ✭✭
    > @Chris_QPW said:
    > Don't get me wrong I certainly think that Quicken Inc has a part in this and should be working to fix it.
    > I just don't think they have any control over the change and complaining to Amex (if possible) would be the better route, but I doubt it will make any difference. 

    I would think Quicken could tell them they have had many problems with other banks and suggest they postpone the change?

    It seems unlikely these banks would all make the decision on their own to invest time making these changes. It seems more likely to me something is driving it, maybe a fee change or maybe getting off Intuit as the middleman.🤷‍♂️

    Raising prices significantly (subscription vs buy every few years, removing Basic) and having long term issues like the payroll sync/erasing issue and having to manually download transactions, stokes user frustration.
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    SteveY said:
    I would think Quicken could tell them they have had many problems with other banks and suggest they postpone the change?
    Well, I don't believe that Quicken Inc has such pull with the financial institutions.  And not even Intuit, the US government has suggested moving to a different system, they have to pay to support Direct Connect and it is only used by Quicken/Intuit and they have many other "aggregators".  They aren't doing this in a vacuum for sure, but they most likely don't have the pull you think they have.

    SteveY said:
    > @Chris_QPW said:
    It seems unlikely these banks would all make the decision on their own to invest time making these changes. It seems more likely to me something is driving it, maybe a fee change or maybe getting off Intuit as the middleman.🤷‍♂️
    Do you understand that the new flow puts Intuit smack in the middle?

    Express Web Connect + flow:
    Quicken (the program) -> Quicken servers/Quicken Cloud dataset -> Intuit servers talking to financial institution using the FDX protocol.

    Yes, the financial institutions get to drop supporting and paying for Direct Connect, but Intuit just got put "more into the flow".

    Direct Connect flow:
    Quicken (the program) -> OFX server on the financial institution's servers.

    SteveY said:
    Raising prices significantly (subscription vs buy every few years, removing Basic) and having long term issues like the payroll sync/erasing issue and having to manually download transactions, stokes user frustration.
    I doubt the Quicken employees have much to say about this.  The company funding them probably dictates the licensing, and the rest is that they can only provide what is available.  If a financial institution drops a service, Quicken Inc can't do anything to force them to change.

    I personally think they are in bed with some bad third-parties, but there isn't a whole lot of them to pick from and what's more I don't think they have what it takes to rip out the support and go with other ones.
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  • Boatnmaniac
    Boatnmaniac SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2022
    SteveY said:

    I would think Quicken could tell them they have had many problems with other banks and suggest they postpone the change?

    It seems unlikely these banks would all make the decision on their own to invest time making these changes. It seems more likely to me something is driving it, maybe a fee change or maybe getting off Intuit as the middleman.🤷‍♂️
    EWC+ is simply the name Quicken has given to FDX.  FDX is a financial institutions standards consortium that has been driving in this direction (to eliminate historical connection methods and move to single standardized connection method) for quite a few years.  You can read up on them at About-FDX - Our Mission (financialdataexchange.org).

    Once you are in that website click on The Consortium at the top of the page.  Then scroll down and see a list of financial institutions that have been developing FDX and have made a commitment to implement it.  You will see that this is not a matter of just a few banks that are driving this change...it is a very large chunk of the financial institutions industry that is doing this. So, yes, these banks did not embark down this path on their own.  They might have set their own schedules for implementation but each of these banks is just a small piece of the pie.

    Having worked in industries where development of and compliance with industry standards and standards changes are paramount, I can tell you that once a standards change is in the works it cannot be stopped.  It would be like trying to stop a bulldozer from moving forward by standing in front of it.  It simply does not end well for the one standing in front of it.

    Why the desire for a new standard?  We'll probably never know for sure but the FDX website provides some insites: 
    • FDX eliminates royalties/fees and provides the financial institutions more control over who and how customer financial data is provided to 3rd parties.  
    • DC carries fees/royalties so EWC+ eliminates that cost for them.
    • Historical connection methods give control of how 3rd parties access customer data to the 3rd parties.  The financial institutions must consider this to be a signifiant security risk for them.  FDX/EWC+ gives that control back to the financial institutions.
    • Eliminates the need to maintain functionality and compatibility with several different connection methods and instead work with only one connection method going forward.  I would think that is a very big resource cost reduction for the banks.
    There's probably other things driving this but we might not really ever know the full scope of it.

    (Quicken Classic Premier Subscription: R55.15 on Windows 11)

  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    SteveY said:

    EWC+ is simply the name Quicken has given to FDX.

    I would state this slightly differently.

    Express Web Connect + is Quicken Inc/Intuit's implementation of a connection method that uses FDX to exchange data with the financial institution.

    In other words, other than the actual connection between the aggregator and the financial institution, different aggregators/programs can implement the rest of the connection in any way they like.

    It is even conceivable that you might have a program that uses FDX to directly talk to a financial institution (Express Web Connect + implementation has it going through Quicken and Intuit servers).  In practice I doubt that will ever happen. FDX isn't free.  It costs quite a bit to join their consortium, not to mention having relationships with the various financial institutions that would allow you actually contact their servers.
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  • SteveY
    SteveY Member ✭✭
    Thanks for the background. Having been sold off from Intuit I would not have expected them to go back to Intuit but <shrug>. Sounds like Intuit wrote it first and is selling it as a service.

    Re: missing transactions, it does download them as it says four thousand or whatever were downloaded, when I activate EWC+, but has no pending to import. Known issue, linked above. At least with this forum’s assistance I can import from a .qfx file now. Otherwise that card has the most transactions to type in.
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    I don't think they really had any choice in the matter.

    Yes, Intuit sold Quicken, but kept the team that maintains the connection services.  Which includes Express Web Connect (and now Express Web Connect +) and even with Direct Connect/Web Connect(QFX files) it is Intuit that directly deals with the financial institutions as far as keeping up the URLs and helping with any support questions.  Quicken Inc is just way too small to do this, and they would have to go with one "aggregator" or another, and it would have been a major rewrite/development/rollout to do that.

    So, they pay Intuit as their aggregator.
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  • jr7107
    jr7107 SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    And in all of this, please be reminded of the Quicken Terms of Use and Privacy statements. With this upgrade you also get to share your data more broadly amongst third parties.

    https://www.quicken.com/terms-of-use

    https://www.quicken.com/privacy/us

    https://www.quicken.com/privacy/us/ccpa/disclosures-customers-excustomers

    Read carefully and understand and ask questions. Know where your data is going.
    Quicken user since 1994.
    Quicken Forum/Community Contributor since 2005.
  • cjim
    cjim Member ✭✭
    Thanks for posting @jr7107. Seems pretty broad as you said. I had assumed there would be a little more privacy. Makes you think twice. By chance did you find any opt out links for any of it? I looked and have not found anything even though there is language about opting out.
  • jr7107
    jr7107 SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    cjim said:
    Thanks for posting @jr7107. Seems pretty broad as you said. I had assumed there would be a little more privacy. 
    Transaction level detail for banking, credit card and investments are all collected. Aggregate positions of your investments (in the case of EWC+) is collected. Names of your data files are collected. This is all subject to the links posted above.

    cjim said:
    By chance did you find any opt out links for any of it? I looked and have not found anything even though there is language about opting out.
    I have not found any ability to opt out. I have requested the ability to opt out of any data sharing. Quicken is no longer a "product" it is now a service if you read the terms. I would like Quicken users to understand where their data is, and what it is being used for.
    Quicken user since 1994.
    Quicken Forum/Community Contributor since 2005.
  • JBL in AZ
    JBL in AZ Member ✭✭✭
    I started this thread because Amex announced they were (in effect) switching to EWC+, and I've already had problems with two other banks who did that; one is since resolved, the other (Chase) is ongoing (a third bank I use also switched, but I didn't notice it and I've had no problem.
    Subsequently I noticed I have been unable to load Amex transactions. Since I mentioned that, it behooves me to add that (since Amex has not switched yet) my problem has nothing to do with EWC+, and further that I did solve my problem by doing a Reset on the account. In other words, that particular issue I introduced is moot and irrelevant.

    (Win10, Deluxe v.4.5.13)
  • SteveY
    SteveY Member ✭✭
    > @jr7107 said:
    > Quicken is no longer a "product" it is now a service if you read the terms.

    "The term "Product" includes any Quicken branded software that we offer, as well as any related Products such as third-party software or apps that we make available to members. The term "Services" includes other functionality such as the ability to download data from third parties or the ability to pay bills from within a Product." ;)

    Always good to read the T&C though. https://www.npr.org/2019/03/08/701417140/when-not-reading-the-fine-print-can-cost-your-soul
  • jr7107
    jr7107 SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    SteveY said:
    "The term "Product" includes any Quicken branded software that we offer, as well as any related Products such as third-party software or apps that we make available to members. The term "Services" includes other functionality such as the ability to download data from third parties or the ability to pay bills from within a Product." ;)
    I see no product here. I'm a subscriber. When the data remained within the FI and desktop then possibly when an upgrade wasn't required. Now, they even collect your file names. Because that's relevant?  But you can have a product without the the service as auto entry (the benefit you pay for) and now the data that is shared which may or may not be sold to another party. Maybe you could find in the fine print where we could opt out.
    Quicken user since 1994.
    Quicken Forum/Community Contributor since 2005.
  • PeterS74
    PeterS74 Member
    I got switched over to EWC+ for AmEx today. I ended up reverting to a backup and declining the change after all my reconciled AmEx transactions for the last 4 months were deleted (along with the corresponding transfers). They apparently were all downloaded, but I didn't want to deal with categorizing and accepting them again. I'll just enter manually until this is fixed.
  • jr7107
    jr7107 SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    PeterS74 said:
    I got switched over to EWC+ for AmEx today. I ended up reverting to a backup and declining the change after all my reconciled AmEx transactions for the last 4 months were deleted (along with the corresponding transfers). They apparently were all downloaded, but I didn't want to deal with categorizing and accepting them again. I'll just enter manually until this is fixed.
    Your data did make it to the Intuit servers to aggregate. I'm not certain how much data or how long it remains there now that you revoked access.

    Some states in addition to CA have enacted consumer privacy laws in 2023, I encourage to you check out if your state is there and ask Quicken for an opt-out of any sharing of information.

    I currently manually run a few accounts because the data does not belong to anyone but the user. The change of terms from a product to a service that now aggregates your data with third party and also allows analysis of your data and sharing with third parties all so you have the privilege to download what is already yours. 

    Ask questions about your data privacy and opting out.
    Quicken user since 1994.
    Quicken Forum/Community Contributor since 2005.
  • jr7107
    jr7107 SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    Quicken user since 1994.
    Quicken Forum/Community Contributor since 2005.
This discussion has been closed.