Tracking Cash

Based on customer feedback, I've created this post to collect ideas on what our cash feature might look like.

In your responses, it would be most helpful if you:

1. Describe the PROBLEM that you face as an investor that you're wanting solved.

2. Help us define the feature by providing SPECIFIC details about what you'd want it to do.

***

"Cash" in the context of a portfolio application can mean different things to different people. We're keen to triangulate the challenges you face as investors, your expectation of what you want this feature to do, and what we're capable of building.

On one hand this feature might allow you to create, modify, and track a simple cash balance in the context of your portfolio, or maybe you expect your cash holding to affect your overall performance calculation. You may want an interface to reconcile a cash balance to each transaction. Additionally, some clients may define cash as the amount available for investment, or from dividends received, whilst others may view this is as a way to track fixed interest securities.

By gathering this information we can identify the most common requirements, and what sort of development effort is required.

Doug
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  • 9
    The problem for me is that I never see my total portfolio size in Sharesight because at any given point I might have 10% - 50% of my portfolio 'off the table'. 'Off the table' might mean back in my mortgage offset account, sitting in my trading account or in a high interest bank account.

    In this context 'cash' means any funds that are allocated to my portfolio, that I have access to and that is not currently invested in the stock market.

    This is what I want to primarily use Sharesight for - to track my overall portfolio growth/loss over time. I currently have to use finance functions in Google Sheets to do this - Sharesight should be able to replace this.

    An entry level feature request would be as follows:

    - I can add multiple cash holdings to represent individual bank accounts.
    - I can manually add an initial account balance, plus manually enter deposits/withdrawals to each one of those holdings.
    - I can choose one cash holding per Sharesight portfolio as a 'trading account'
    - Every equity purchase/sale recorded in the individual portfolio is automatically added/deducted from the 'trading account' cash holding.
    - Dividends confirmed as received are automatically added to the 'trading account' on the appropriate dates.
    - The charts/graph at the top of the portfolio page has an option to 'include cash holdings', so that I can see total portfolio size by time period.

    What I don't need (although would be nice at a later point):

    - I don't need to track performance of cash or have it included in reports
    - I don't need the holding to adjust for interest etc
    - I don't need to have this included in my capital gains / taxable income.
    - I don't need the holding to connect to my bank accounts or use any api's.

    Feel free to contact me as per my account information if you want to discuss further.
    • view 1 more comment
    • Well put, and covers it although I have less rigidly defined requirements especially when it comes to Duncan's 'don't needs'

      It would handy to be able to transfer. My issue is I have parked investment cash, in a cash management account and this can go up and down enough to distort the overall portfolio picture according to maturing bonds or term deposits. Since I have term deposits and bonds already in the system, it would be nice to transfer them to a cash management account when they mature, and transfer out of that account to create a new terms deposit/bond.
    • I like Duncan's ideas slimmed down a bit. I just need to be able to track the cash management accounts attached to my online brokers. ie the CDIA for Commsec and the Pershing account for Commsec International. If they automatically recorded buys and sells and dividend deposits I'd be in seventh heaven.
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  • I’m pleased with progress
    4
    Doug - you are absolutely correct in taking this approach as there are different expectations - even though it seems simple at the start.

    I agree with everything Duncan has written with one major exception. I need to track cash in different currencies in the same portfolio if possible. I hold USD to buy and sell US stocks and CDN dollars to buy and sell Canadian stocks. The problem that affects my portfolio performance is the changing exchange rates. Just in this calendar year the rate has varied over 12% which easily swamps my portfolio performance. Currently when I own US stocks the exchange rate changes are nicely and accurately included in performance, but the un-invested cash is not. And of course that balance of invested to non-invested cash changes every day.

    So to summarize I would like the features Duncan lists but I also need to track performance of cash and include it in performance reports, and I need at least 2 cash holdings per portfolio in separate currencies.

    Later we could get into margin accounts where cash can go below zero balance but I can live without that for now.
    • One of the major delights of Sharesight is it's ability to separately report my currency gains/losses on shares. But, like Carr (above), I have cash in several currencies in several trading accounts and I'm just as interested in the currency movements of my off-shore cash as I am in the currency movements of my off-shore shares - occasionally more so! I'm happy to manually enter off-normal transactions but would like Sharesight to auto-offset my trades into a cash account nominated on a per-holding basis. Thanks for considering...
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  • I’m pleased this is being seriously discussed
    2
    I concur with the above two list of features though if I had to choose, Duncan's list is all I need with a minor tweak: the ability to specify the currency of the bank account.
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  • I’m happy
    2
    I was about to write a comprehensive post but Doug's post above basically sums up my thoughts.

    "- I can add multiple cash holdings to represent individual bank accounts.
    - I can manually add an initial account balance, plus manually enter deposits/withdrawals to each one of those holdings.
    - I can choose one cash holding per Sharesight portfolio as a 'trading account'
    - Every equity purchase/sale recorded in the individual portfolio is automatically added/deducted from the 'trading account' cash holding.
    - Dividends confirmed as received are automatically added to the 'trading account' on the appropriate dates.
    - The charts/graph at the top of the portfolio page has an option to 'include cash holdings', so that I can see total portfolio size by time period."

    Thanks Doug
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  • I’m optimistic this is underway
    3
    I agree with Duncan's post with one exception. Security buy/sell transactions can be allocated to one cash account. Dividend payments can be allocated to another cash account. That is, both types of transactions do not have to go to the one "Trading Account" requested by Duncan
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  • I’m can't wait !
    As a 'mom and pop' investor, I just need a very simple system, say 4 bank accounts, by BANK NAME; maybe BANK COUNTRY/CITY/ADDRESS; ACCOUNT NAME; 19 digit ACCOUNT NUMBER (optional); select a CURRENCY for the account.
    Then all I need to do is select an ACCOUNT, a DATE and enter the AMOUNT in the account on the selected date.
    Next step is to run CONSOLIDATED VIEW, and "bingo" - instant portfolio value. In my case, CASH is seldom over 1% of value, so does not have a significant effect on the grand total.

    Nice to dream about withdrawls for BUYS and deposits for SELLS, DIVIDENDS etc, but at my age the KISS principle works best (Keep It Short and Simple). Alan
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  • 3
    I endorse the view that a simple cash balance feature would be useful to include in total portfolio considerations.

    Could I also suggest that a negative cash balance could also be useful - I am specifically referring to margin loans used to purchase stocks, which are directly related to portfolio performance.
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  • 1
    The 'problem' I would like solved is simply to mirror my online investment/trading portfolio (which it does very well) AND my cash management account(s) (so called trading accounts) which are in denominated in multiple currencies, typically USA, AUD, UK pounds, and NZD - though may also be spread across more than one bank.

    I do not want another expensive SaaS product, aka Xero cash management account to be the API to my cash management Bank accounts, even if it's integrated to Sharesight. I want Sharesight to do this bank API natively and accurately report my daily investment positions PLUS my cash position. This needs to, and would enable, a positive or negative cash balance, as per margin lending.

    This will solve my current problem of being unable to see my total investment AND cash position.
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  • 1
    Duncan Owen's suggestions satisfy my needs. Especially the bit about not including these cash accounts in my portfolio performance. They're a nuisance tracking cash at the moment as it does affect my performance.

    Love the idea of recording dividends automatically in specified accounts. For me it needs to be a different account per currency. That will save me doing everything twice (acknowledging the dividend and then recording the deposit in my cash account).
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  • 3
    The problem I would like solved is like this:

    I can't see my total portfolio position in sharesight. I can't see my total investible assets, and the performance metrics are skewed towards shares.

    I would like to see:
    * The ability to add cash accounts along with the currency they are in.
    * The ability to manually record deposits and withdrawals in cash accounts. They should be able to be specified as "interest" or not, if they are interest they are included in performance stats.
    * The ability for dividends to be automatically deposited to a cash account, ideally specified per holding, but per market would be ok too.
    * The ability for trades to be settled against a cash account, probably this implies setting a default account for each market.
    * The ability to transfer money between cash accounts, handling currency change the way that on AUD dividends are currently handled.
    * Nice to have would be the ability to automatically add/withdraw an amount to a cash account periodically, ie. adding to savings, or drawing down.

    I would like cash to be included in performance, but I'm guessing some people would like the ability to turn that off.
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  • 1
    I agree with most of the comments here, particularly Matthew Sharp above. I implemented my own system to track cash using Sharesight which works relatively well and could be tidied up relatively easily to specifically apply to cash. I have created an "OTHER" account for each Cash currency I want to track. So, I have "CASH-NZD", "CASH-AUD", "CASH-USD" etc.

    Although I have multiple bank accounts for some of these currencies I don't track these separately in Sharesight. One Sharesight position for each currency is all I use. Interest payments are handled easily by recording a "Enter a new Interest Payment" transaction.

    Other cash movements in and out are handled by adding a BUY (deposit) or SELL (withdrawal) for whatever the amount is, always with a Unit Price of 1.00 and brokerage of zero. You could do this for every cash movement in and out, but I find it easier to just track the closing balances of each currency monthly and add a single buy or sell to handle it once a month. You could do it weekly or more frequently if you wanted.

    These "holdings" get reported in my overall portfolio, which is what I want and FX movements are automatically accounted for (monthly using my system). Now that we have Custom Groupings all of these accounts can be categorised as "Cash".

    If you created a new account type called "CASH" all that would be needed would be to specify the Currency to be tracked and allow Interest and withdrawal/deposits to be made. You could make the task easier by allowing a specific cash account to be specified to deposit net dividend/interest payments and settlements from/to for each position (which would have to be changeable).

    I don't need a reconcile feature, otherwise you are getting into the realm of full feature accounting for cash which I do not think most people want or need in Sharesight.
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  • Xero Non GST Cash Book works perfectly for both my personal and Trust investments and my clients and only costs $12.00 per month.

    But whilst we have investments in foreign currencies we only have home currency (New Zealand) dollar bank accounts.

    To handle foreign currencies I think we'd have to go to the $70 a month version and that would hurt!

    The integration and flow of data is pretty seemless, just click in Xero to reconcile the Sharesight generated transaction with the actual bank entries already populated by feed from bank. Enter data once!

    The bit I especially like integrating with Xero is when I look at Sharesight I can see a dividend should have been paid. Then I look in Xero to see if it's populated via the bank feed and if necessary adjust Sharesight to be 100% accurate as there are sometimes a few cents difference. If it's not in the bank account I can start working out why. Clients have caught "missing" dividends this way. In one instance a company stopped posting cheques and would only direct credit. Client hadn't provided a bank account number so they hadn't received the last 4 dividends.

    With my Investment Adviser hat on I consider Cash to be a core component of an Investment portfolio. Comparing the performance of the cash portion of a portfolio with shares can be an enlightening experience for many, Yes even if it's only paying single digit returns
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    • Currently Sharesight doesn't track cash and Xero does. I need to track cash in portfolios NOW so I use Xero. I consider $12.00 a month to be a bargain for the time it saves me. And as a bonus I can do the full set of Trust Accounts for tax purposes and reporting to the other Trustees from Xero with a great suite of reports for the Investment Portfolio from Sharesight.
    • I use Xero for reconciliation and tax reporting transactions pushed from Sharesight. However, I don't use it the other way round for several reasons:

      1. I have multiple brokerage/bank accounts that I don't want to see separately on the investment report. NZD Cash is the tracking entity I want to see, not 5 different accounts.

      2. I don't want to pay for Multiple Currency Xero but I would like to track the various FX cash balances in Sharesight.

      3. My NZD accounts have transactions unrelated to investing passing through them (e.g. trust expenses and beneficiary loans). I don't want these balances reflected in Sharesight.

      4. When I did a trial a while ago, Sharesight only brought in the last 12 months of Xero data so anything before that still had to be manually tracked in Sharesight.
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  • 1
    I use Xero as an add on to push all the transactions from Sharesight and track any missing payments. But I still don't use it for the cash tracking part of my Sharesight portfolio. I need USD/GBP/AUD cash included in the portfolio and I am not going to pay $70 per month just for that
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  • I’m still optimistic
    2
    We have been collecting comments for over a month now. Are we there yet? Does Sharesight have enough to propose or develop a solution? If there is not consensus then let's see what the differences are and debate them (or not).
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  • I’m frustrated
    Hey people following this thread, could you please 'like this idea' at the top of the page (the bottom of Doug's post).

    Because this question was moved to a new thread only 3 people have liked the idea. Yet clearly there are many more who want this feature.

    At the moment it's not appearing as one of the top 5 ideas that Sharesight should be working on.
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  • I’m sad
    Hey guys. I've decided to terminate my account. It's partly because of the non-action on the cash issue and partly because the cost is pretty high for what you get. I have to enter all transactions separately as my brokers do not line up with Sharesight. I can get almost as much from my good old spreadsheets. Good luck to all and happy trading
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  • Hi Carr,

    Thanks for your feedback, appreciate you letting us know. We do plan to support brokers in Canada.

    Would you be willing to let us know who you use? This will help us prioritise.

    Also, my encouragement would be to not cancel your free plan. You're able to use this for as long as you'd like and this means you'll be kept abreast of our Canadian feature development.

    -Doug
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  • 2
    The cash problem is a nightmare and makes wholistic portfolio tracking almost impossible and irrelevant. Xero doesn't link in to the "cash" held in most brokerage accounts and as a result you have to manually adjust your "Cash" "custom investment" every time you make a trade which is incredibly annoying.

    If I ignore cash and don't include this and for example of my £100k portfolio I am only £50k invested, then I don't end up seeing a proper view of my performance as it would roughly double my performance (I wouldn't see the dragging effect of having Cash in deposits at 0%, which is real).

    A very simply and effective solution would be to have another asset class called "Cash Accounts".

    I might have 3 cash accounts to hold my £50k of cash

    £25,000 in my Barclays Account
    £15,000 in my TD Investing Account
    £10,000 in my Merrill Lynch Account

    Let's say the Barclays Account is linked to xero - this will generally just be transferring money into and out of the other two accounts so there is money on tap to make trades. Hence monitoring it is very cumbersome.

    A good solution would be to have a dropdown menu when you make a trade so that you can link a trade to a specific cash account.

    Let's say I buy £5,000 worth of Apple Shares using my TD Investing Account, I would simply type in the trade details as I do at the moment but also link this trade to my TD Investing account. Sharesight would then automatically reduce my TD Investing Account by £5,000

    A further feature that would be great would be to automatically spot transactions between the accounts. This could be done quite easily also as for TD Investing I would have them down as a "contact" in Xero so you could scan for payments into and out of that "contact" in order to work out cash transfers between my main cash account and the TD Investing Account.

    For example, if I transfer £5,000 from Barclays to TD investing and Xero is only linked to Barclays, my Xero would show a £5,000 payment to "TD Investing". Sharesights could then automatically adjust to make the same transfer and show the extra £5k sitting in TD Investing bringing the total back to £15k (the original £15k, less the £5k apple purchase, plus the £5k cash injection).

    This would be a very simple and effective way to track cash. The system could also I assume be used to track different currencies as you could denominate an account in any currency - hence automatically tracking FX changes.
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  • I’m angry
    2
    My question is how is tracking cash the #3 ranked idea in this community and yet is the only feature not 'under consideration' for Sharesight in the top 10 most 'liked' ideas?

    Sharesight should be my #1 stop for my portfolio, where at the moment I only use it 10% of what I could do if cash tracking, real time price updates and more flexibility around share information (like quick views of dividend yields in my portfolio etc) were available.
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  • I track my cash in Xero which also does my financial & tax accounts. Yes it costs extra but it works, and it works great.

    Sharesight does as it says on the box. They never promised me they'd track cash. I don't expect them to.
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  • Hi All,

    We are finally in a position to start analysis on a cash account feature.

    We've decided to prioritize cash over other forum ideas given it has the next highest number of likes after 20 min delayed pricing (which is now in the planning stages).

    I have reviewed all of the comments on this thread and will initially focus on the feature suggestions mostly covered by Matthew, Carr, Duncan and Brad early in the thread.

    Our aim is to provide a relatively basic cash account solution that will meet the needs of those who don't require the more feature rich integrated Xero option that we currently offer.

    I will update this forum topic when we've fleshed out in more detail what our initial release will look like.

    Thanks for all the clearly laid out ideas, it makes the initial scoping exercise a lot faster.

    Regards
    Ben
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  • 1
    Yes, a basic cash feature linked to the trading account will be very welcome and provide a more realistic picture of the impacts of withdrawals, deposits and purchases on the actual equity holding. Looking forward to it !
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  • PS - given this issue has been discussed for many months, now that it is being worked on, do you have an ETA when something may be available?
    • Unfortunately I can't give you an ETA at this stage. We are still working through 20 min pricing and are only in the initial stages of working out what the cash solution will look like.

      Any ETA would just be a stab in the dark at this point.

      I will keep this forum topic updated with our progress whenever I have something to report.
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  • Good to hear this is progressing.

    Hopefully will be capable of being expanded quickly to a feature to track margins loans as well.
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  • 1
    I am new to sharesight. So far I think it's really great with all the stats and trends it gives you. I have been using quicken for 20 years to track our finances but because the version I was using (2006!) started to fail I looked around and found sharesight. I also looked at the Sharesight plus Xero combination but because I have forex accounts I am probably not going with Xero. Their $70 per month cost for a premium account that handles forex accounts is not worth it to me. Also the set up in Xero looks complex and that's despite the fact I have an accounting background.

    Just as an initial view I don't think it's practical to turn sharesight into a cash tracking accounting software just so you can work out overall portfolio performance, you have to use a spreadsheet to do that and track your cash balances in an accounting software. What I like about sharesight is it's relatively simple user interface. To track my personal finances I'm going to use Reckon personal plus which is the NZ/oz version of quicken. Since Reckon is only a desk top application I will keep using sharesight. I'm loving the fact that sharesight is cloud based and accessible on my mobile devices.

    If there were to be any cash tracking on sharesight I would only want the ability to manually put in balances for nz and foreign accounts with currency conversion. And then also the ability to still work out the return on the shares portion only of my portfolio still. That's what I like about sharesight. I'm not looking for a full service personal finance software from sharesight.
    • As Karin identifies, ease of use is critical for a simple cash feature. We're certainly not seeking a complex cash management solution, which is why I assume Sharesight developed the API to work with Xero (for people that have advanced/complex requirements).

      I also like that Karin confirms my problem quite specifically too, re using spreadsheets and accounting software just to get an ongoing picture of her equity portfolio over time. This is a good example of the type of workaround solution I'm enduring.

      The ability to add multiple cash accounts, set a currency for each account and manually add cash deposits/withdrawals is all that is required.

      The second stage would be to have dividends and buy/sells for each holding posted automatically to the linked cash account.
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  • This reply was removed on 2017-03-18.
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  • I’m thankful
    1
    Oh Boy!! I'm afraid my needs are miniscule by comparison with most of what I've read and probably have little to add to the topic. I can see that there is probably room for a Cash Account, although this is really handled by CMC markets website for my needs. I can see that a register of Dividends Received would be interesting and likewise with expected Franking Credits.
    I have built my own spreadsheet that does everything I need but if all the trading details were covered by Sharesight it would save the double entry that I go through.

    With limited computer skills and an ever decreasing ability to cope with modern day computer speak anything that simplifies the system is good for me - THanks Ron Richards
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  • Hi All,

    I just wanted to let you know that we have finally started work this week on the first stage of our new cash account feature.

    Here are a couple of design's illustrating how the screen may end up looking.

    The first is the view on a desktop:


    The second is how it might look if using our main Sharesight application but on mobile


    The second stage will be to have dividends & buys/sells posted automatically.

    I won't give an estimate on a time frame at this stage, but we are now focused on the feature and it is being actively developed.

    Regards
    Ben
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  • I just want a simple cash account that will calculate interest correctly. It should be the simplest thing to achieve. You input the interest rate your earning and then you 'buys' when you deposit or 'sells' when you withdraw.

    I cant believe that after 6 years this is still not possible.
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  • Matthew, our custom investment feature does this. You have the option to set an interest amount, payment date, and frequency and top up your account with buys or withdrawal with sells. We've replied to your latest email with a bit more detail.
    • So will we be able to link a custom investment account as the "cash account" for trades? To my simple thinking, that would be all that's needed...

      The custom investment account works great as my Cash Account, automatically calculating monthly interest and calculating the return.

      All I would need is to link this account (investment0 when making trades, and to nominate this account (investment) to receive dividends / distributions from other investments...
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  • Will we be able to have multiple cash accounts for different currencies?
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  • I’m happy
    Thank you for the news! Can't wait to have this cash option to finally get out of google finance
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  • Cash accounts would be a great addition. A bulk upload would be very helpful.
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  • It would certainly need to be able to include dividends accumulating on the cash account
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  • Hi there

    I think it's a great idea to integrate cash holdings.

    Is there any plan to automatically integrate with CMC/Bankwest's cash account? I'd like to see my total position.

    Thanks

    Sean
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  • I was looking at switching from stockopedia to here but as you don't track cash I will have to wait. What I want is a cash account linked to a portfolio that lets me track deposits, dividends, interest, withdrawals and fees. Stockopedia lets me graph and compare deposits made against the portfolio value.
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    Hello all,

    Great that the wheels are turning on the whole cash issue. I'm currently bringing in a few AUD cash accounts via Xero but I've got others that Xero do not support.

    Assuming the basic cash account gets rolled out, it would be great to extend this to multiple currencies. I currently have to create a custom security to achieve this.

    Will it be possible to maintain a negative cash balance in the cash account (corresponding to an overdraft situation or loan financing)?

    Thanks,

    Matthew
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    • Excellent news. I think this functionality adds something that is missing from all other software platforms as far as I am aware. Nice work.
    • I would like to be able to give an indicative beta release Tim, but at this stage, I'm not sure.

      One of the issues we are tackling with this feature is the upgrade of the tables within the application to a new technology.

      It's work that we have to do but is reasonably complex, at least to do it right.

      As soon as I can offer some dates, I will update this topic!
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  • I'm moving off google finance as are a few other followers on this thread (it seems). The ability to track cash balance is important for me. Personally, all I need is exactly what google finance currently provides, which are the following 3 features (screenshot attached, numbered accordingly):

    1) Ability to track my cash balance as a line item in my portfolio (in just one currency, I'm not doing any forex trading) & having it contribute to the overall portfolio value

    2) Ability to withdraw or deposit into my cash account. I sometimes take cash in and out of my trading account.

    3) For all transactions, have the option to "Deduct from cash", meaning if I buy an asset, it deducts from my cash balance. If I sell, it adds to my cash.

    That's all, hope that helps

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