Brokerage Import Best Practices

The following information is useful to know when using StockMarketEye to import your investment data from a supported brokerage.

  • Each time you “Import from a supported Brokerage”, a new portfolio will be created and your current holdings as well as all transactions that the brokerage makes available are imported and included in the new portfolio.
  • The brokerage import will retrieve transactions as far back as the brokerage allows. StockMarketEye works best when it has a complete set of transactions going back to the beginning of your portfolio. However, most brokerages limit how far back you can get your transactions. Some limit it to as few as 90 days (such as E*Trade) where as others (such as Vanguard) allow you to pull all of the transactions since the beginning of your account.
  • After the initial import, you can click the "More" button on the toolbar and then select Update from Brokerage... in the dropdown menu. This will get any changes since the original import or last time you updated from the brokerage. This just updates that portfolio and does not create a new one.
  • When you “Update from Brokerage...” in an existing portfolio, StockMarketEye will only add new transactions that it gets from the brokerage. That is, it will only add the transactions that do not already exist in that portfolio. It determines which ones are new based on a special number that your brokerage assigns to each transaction. If that number already exists in this StockMarketEye portfolio, we don’t add that transaction to the portfolio.
  • When you “Update from Brokerage...” the new transactions are applied to the portfolio so that the Prices view stays current with the activity in your brokerage account. If, in your brokerage account, activity took place for which no transaction was included in the downloaded data, the Prices view of your portfolio may be out-of-sync with what your brokerage reports.
  • Transactions that you make at your brokerage may not be immediately available for download. It can take brokerages up to 5 days to clear the transactions and make them available to external programs like StockMarketEye. Even for the speediest brokerages, transactions will not be available for download until several hours after the close of trade on the day the transaction was executed.
  • You can edit the imported transactions, including changing/modifying their comments.

Typical Usage

Here are the typical steps you use to import your data and keep that up-to-date with the brokerage.

  1. Import your portfolio from the brokerage.
  2. Modify any “Placeholder” transactions to include the correct purchase date and purchase price. See the section on Brokerage Import - Placeholder Transactions for more details.
  3. Copy any missing transactions from the portfolios you previously created in StockMarketEye into the newly imported portfolio. Be sure that these transactions are not applied to the portfolio, but simply added.
  4. Use the “Update from brokerage...” feature to periodically get the latest transactions from your brokerage. Typically you’d want to do this after you have purchases/sales in the actual brokerage account. But at a minimum, every 90 days, so you don’t lose any transactions in case your brokerage has a 90-day limit.
  5. You should not normally need to manually add transactions to an imported portfolio. Only use the “Update from brokerage...” to get the latest transactions. Adding transactions manually (apart from the copying of transactions from #3) can throw off the totals in your portfolio. In rare circumstances, you may need to add transactions manually to make adjustments to the portfolio that are not properly handled by the brokerage, but typically this is rare.

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