Schwab transactions download via csv??

davet65's Avatar


26 Jan, 2023 03:21 PM

I have followed the discussion about Schwab<>Plaid<>Moneydance. I have chosen to workaround this problem rather than use Plaid by just manually monitoring total account value in MD, so am not struggling to make that work. But Schwab provides csv download of transaction history via their website. Has anyone made this work? I searched here and didn't find anything recent. And I do use csv file download for Discover and Import to MD as per instructions in discussions here. I am just reluctant [and not competent] to be the guinea pig for trying this with Schwab.

Any help? And thanks!

  1. 1 Posted by -Kevin N. on 26 Jan, 2023 04:49 PM

    -Kevin N.'s Avatar

    Hi davet65,

    Unfortunately, CSV files cannot be imported into investment type accounts.

    QIF is the bare minimum. There is an Excel add-on called XL2QIF that converts CSV to QIF, but the CSV must be formatted so that it conforms to Moneydance. TBH, it's not for the novice.

    There is a CSV to OFX converter in the works by some clever individuals, but it is still in its infancy.

    I would say, at this point, your only other option is to manually enter your transactional data from Schwab.

    -Kevin N. (not a member of MD support)

  2. 2 Posted by davet65 on 26 Jan, 2023 10:04 PM

    davet65's Avatar

    Many thanks, Kevin. That is exactly what I feared as I know investment transactions are "harder". So you saved me lots of trouble. Many thanks to you and all the other informal MD support personnel. I would have been long-gone from MD without you.

  3. 3 Posted by dtd on 26 Jan, 2023 11:12 PM

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    just a user

    Kevin's response is spot on about csv and investment accounts (for almost all finance programs) being incompatible due to no standard existing.

    As I work with folks, trying to help, I ask
    What is your primary issue with the Schwab/Plaid/Moneydance interface?
    I know of several, but I do download my Schwab investment accounts through MD+, and overall, it does work, but I admit that I may have some "workarounds" that I now do without thinking about it (like some journal entries don't appear, and some action items need altering after downloading)... but overall, it works adequately for me.

  4. 4 Posted by davet65 on 27 Jan, 2023 04:15 AM

    davet65's Avatar

    My primary issue with the interface is that I don't want to be a Beta Tester. I just want it to work, and work correctly. And with downloading issues of various types over the decade or so I've been with MD that I have experienced, I just took a wait and see attitude about the third party setup that Plaid created. I saw how long it took MD/Sean to iron some of those earlier download issues out, specifically with Schwab. And the workaround that I created minimized the need for manually recording transactions, but only manually entering the overall account values as an artificial "security" once a week or so. The details of the holdings are only at Schwab, and I'm OK with that. And when I read the post about Quicken having similar issues with Schwab now, I could only say I did the right thing FOR ME.

    Thanks for asking, though. A very reasonable question that may help others.

  5. 5 Posted by dtd on 27 Jan, 2023 11:23 PM

    dtd's Avatar

    Thanks for the response!

  6. 6 Posted by dwg on 28 Jan, 2023 12:10 AM

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    From another perspective.

    Outside of the U.S. Direct connect never really existed (some institutions in Canada may have supported it) so the rest never had such an option. With the use of aggregators the data is becoming somewhat more available but not necessarily to the degree people expect.

    What I am seeing happening here is that the data that is becoming available is banking type data, i.e. bank and credit card accounts, loans not investment information.

    Looking at the available Investment information, for direct shares I see PDF copies of contact notes and PDF files of dividends and the like, nothing of any direct use for data acquisition.

    For funds yes CSV files are available but n examination shows something that reads like a bank statement i.e. it has date, description and amount of each item, even if it was available in QIF or OFX format it would still be useless.

    There is one major vendor of Personal Financial Management Software customized for this market, so what has he done.

    For direct shares nothing, you need specific data off the Dividend statements and no two PDFs are the same, contract notes differ between brokers.

    For funds a different approach has been taken and the fund is only maintained at a total level. In the software buy and sells work as normal but additions and removals work as changes in value.

    Ok this will not work in Moneydance as it is accounting based, the other software is not and any similarity is purely coincidental :) But in Moneydance changes in value of investment is reflected by changes in the share price.

    As institutions move away from providing any useful download data and expect you to use their on line capability for analysis and management (sound like they are trying to lock you in?) I suspect it is going to be come increasingly necessary to just use use tools like Moneydance to monitor total values, Money in and out of the investment using buys/sells and changes in value via share price changes.

    There is nothing vendors like Moneydance can do about this, the institutions are becoming increasing unwilling to provide data and governments are often unwilling to force them to.

  7. 7 Posted by dwg on 28 Jan, 2023 12:12 AM

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    I should add and where they do provide data it is often in unusable formats, that allow them to say we have provided the data.

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