Schwab downloads - my solution regarding 3rd party access

davet65's Avatar


08 Apr, 2022 07:25 PM

I thought I would add my comments regarding my personal experience now that the Schwab situation seems to be reaching a [semi-satisfactory?] conclusion.

Like many other MD users, I have anxiously awaited a fix for the last ½ year since this all started. I have not tried to work with band-aids, but just manually updated a couple of critical Schwab accounts with little activity, and put in an artificial transaction occasionally to adjust the value for the others, ignoring the changes to all of the individual holdings. During that time, something happened independent of Schwab that changed my point of view of what to do when Moneydance+ was fully functional.

I have long used an online bill pay service with my local bank that also offers electronic bill retrieval including auto pay of the total bill due - a very convenient feature. Over the years, a few vendors have dropped out of the bill retrieval end. Bill PAY still worked, but that doesn’t require sharing account credentials. This past Fall, suddenly I wasn’t getting ebills for my BofA credit cards. The bill pay service said I had to redo the account setup; I did - more than once. Then BofA told me they had suspicious inquiries, using my correct credentials, into my account. Turns out it was legitimately the online bill pay company trying to re-register my account. And it turns out that BofA had changed the rules regarding 3rd party inquiries, and I was supposed to have made some online BofA settings to allow that and to ID the allowed company. Sound familiar? Neither BofA nor the bill pay company told me what I had to do! I spent a week with cards suspended, hours on the phone, etc. I had enough! I decided that FOR MY USE, I would not allow 3rd party access to any of my accounts, would download transactions using .qfx or .ofx files that I initiated, and hope that that continues to be provided. With the exception of my Schwab [investment] accounts, ALL of my bank and credit card accounts currently allow that. It IS more work for me, but downloading each account once/month [more for my bank - which incidentally has never provided direct access] is not an undue burden. And I feel better about it.

So what about Schwab? I haven’t done it yet, but I am about “sell” all the holdings from most of my Schwab accounts and once a month, update the value of 1 “fake” holding that represents to total value of the account as displayed online. I decided that I really don’t need to have all of my individual holdings in MD and online with Schwab - I have to trade using the Schwab website anyway, and I think their performance records are better than my/MD’s.

I do have one question for MD Support: Rather than Sell all those holdings, can I just delete the account, then reestablish it, perhaps with a slightly different name, with an initial amount equal to the current account value, then buy 1 share of a fake overall account holding and update it using Quote Loader whenever I want? I don’t care if I lose the history. And does the value of the deleted account just disappear? If the cash in the account is important [as it is for one of mine], you could keep track of it separately, and have 2 holdings in that account: fake holding and fake MMF.

I am NOT suggesting that this would work for most MD “investors”, but am convinced for me that staying out of the contentious 3rd party access to my accounts as much as possible can only be a good thing. Thanks for reading!

  1. 1 Posted by dtd on 08 Apr, 2022 09:41 PM

    dtd's Avatar

    just a user - if you've ever had Schwab interact with any other accounts, deleting the Schwab account will also delete those interactions - i.e. it will pretty much destroy the integrity of your datafile.

  2. 2 Posted by dtd on 08 Apr, 2022 09:44 PM

    dtd's Avatar

    just a user - I would NEVER do what you are suggesting - but if you are insistent on this method, I would sell all the shares (virtually, in MD of course), and have a cash value in the account, then adjust the value monthly.

  3. 3 Posted by dwg on 08 Apr, 2022 10:28 PM

    dwg's Avatar

    Perhaps my approach may help some.

    As some would know I'm in Australia, we do not have direct connect and the downloads from many investment houses are nothing more than a CSV file that looks more like a bank statement and are hence pretty useless.

    Due to the laws around retirement accounts and superannuation I have 3 separate investment accounts. These are wrap accounts and each contains multiple funds.

    As you could imagine to maintain data on each fund in each account in Moneydance with the available data would take a lot of time so I do not. I was hoping to do it like I used to be able to do with Reckon (Reckon understands what is and is not available here) but that is not possible.

    In my early days in evaluating Moneydance I tried a lot of different ways, including just using asset accounts, I was not happy with these for this purpose and looked at how Moneydance works with Investment accounts.

    The buy/sell type transactions are accounting 101, pretty basic stuff. Your ongoing value though is geared to the share price. Obvious as what you see in Moneydance is geared toward share transactions in many ways, or you could say individual funds.

    I decided I would treat each wrap account as a single security in Moneydance, of course there is no data for this as it is not single security so I derive my own, which is not difficult.

    Initially each Wrap account had some Money deposited into it (spread across the underlying funds) but that initial deposit I assumed that it was $1 per share so the number of shares was the same as the initial value. A very easy transaction in Moneydance, subsequent to this I needed to work out how to reflect changes in value as well as buys/sells - fortunately since I am managing this at a total level in Moneydance I do not have to worry about rebalancing the portfolio or changing which underlying funds the investments are in.

    The Investment house web site gives my investment total in each fund at any day I select. This is the only number I need from them.

    With this number I can determine what numbers I need for each wrap investment for Moneydance.

    Suppose I add more money. I had the derived number of shares I already had from the last transaction if this is the first time it is from the initial investment. I have the new amount of the total investment that includes the deposit, I deduct the new value and divide it by the calculated number of shares I had to get a price per share. A simple division of the deposit by this number gives me the number of shares I bought, hence I have the data for my new purchase. A withdrawal of funds follows a similar process.

    I update the value of the investment once a month in Moneyance and this is simply the total value of the investment divided by the "shares" I have. Maintaining the number of "shares" I have is the key to making it work.

    Being lazy I just created a spreadsheet I plug the numbers into and use the answer it gives me each month.

    So I just maintain total data in Moneydance so I get overall figures and the actual funds are managed in other ways.

  4. System closed this discussion on 08 Jul, 2022 10:30 PM.

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