Placeholder transactions are reducing my portfolio

Dave Dill
Dave Dill Member
edited September 2023 in Investing (Windows)

Quicken Deluxe for Windows: R51.12 Build

(Using Quicken since 1997)

I recently set up multiple new company retirement accounts at Schwab which comes to Quicken as a brokerage account. I have a money market fund in there that has a ticker symbol (SWVXX) that moved over from another retirement account. Quicken create a placeholder transaction that removes 90% of the shares. The placeholder transaction does not show up in the register but does in the transaction history in the security detail.

I tried deleting all transactions for this symbol in the account and manually adding them. Quicken always adds back in the placeholder without prompting me. These account were added new and a "move Shares" action was entered to record the transfer

It does the same thing in both accounts that hold this ticker symbol. My other brokerage accounts are not doing this.

Any ideas?



  • Tom Young
    Tom Young SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭

    I was having a somewhat similar experience with SWVXX and SNAXX in some but not all of my long-established accounts at Schwab, but since I never allow Schwab to create Placeholders in the first place I didn't see what you're describing with respect to the Placeholder not showing up in the Transaction List but at the same time not showing up in the Security Details transactions. That's a puzzler.

    In my case Placeholders would be proposed, and I dismissed them. Are you allowing Quicken to create Placeholders automatically?

    Digging deeper into the proposed Placeholders I could see that Quicken was somehow "stuck in the past" with Schwqb's holdings, like this:

    and since I download into the Quicken Schwab Accounts every day that statement that it had been more than 90 days since the last download was bogus.

    This problem arose sometime in 2023, long after Schwab moved from Direct Connect to EWC+, but I expect that some aspect of "syncing" - the same process that messes up so many files of users doing Mobile and Syncing their files - is to blame here.

    I can't really remember exactly what I did here to get things to right. I think it involved disconnecting all Schwab Accounts from downloading, either signing in as a different user or actually deleting the cloud file, updating Quicken (probably not need in your case), and then reconnecting all the Accounts.

  • Tom Young
    Tom Young SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Dave Dill

    An update on the issue you mentioned of "Quicken create a placeholder transaction that removes 90% of the shares. The placeholder transaction does not show up in the register but does in the transaction history in the security detail."

    As it happens, I found exactly the same situation in one of my Quicken Accounts related to a dividend transaction that I entered "in the future" in anticipation of a declared dividend, a situation I just happened to stumble upon. I saw that although the dividend transaction entered was a cash dividend with no reference to number of shares except in the Memo field, (i.e., "X number of shares x per share dividend), Quicken had added that "X" figure to my actual number of shares, doubling the number of shares in the Account. This was completely invisible in the Account itself but visible in the security's Transaction list:

    Obviously the transaction makes no sense. Deleting the future transaction and re-entering it cleared up the problem, so I'm wondering if this explains your situation, a clear error on Quicken's part, maybe reflecting some problem with the file itself?

  • Jim_Harman
    Jim_Harman SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited August 2023

    Also if you have Placeholders but can't see them in the account's Transaction List (register), go to Edit > Preferences > Investing and make sure the Show hidden Transactions box is checked. Until a few years ago this box defaulted to un-checked, resulting in much confusion.

    QWin Premier subscription
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