tutorial on multi-currency accounting

Peter Selinger selinger at mathstat.dal.ca
Fri Mar 23 22:11:34 EDT 2007

Hi Mike,

I have finally tried your patches. 

Your patch posted on 2006-09-01 at 
does indeed fix bug 335101, which is a duplicate of 410604.

Your patch posted on 2006-06-07 at
indeed fixes bug 131623, which is a duplicate of 131626, 171801,
334775, 91661, 356077, 169946.

Both bugs have been marked "severity: major". Your first patch is a
one-liner, and your second one is fairly straightforward. I don't
understand why nobody has applied these patches to the trunk, as they
are simple solutions to often-reported bugs. 

Can someone please apply these patches? Thanks, -- Peter

Mike Alexander wrote:
> --On February 22, 2007 4:09:22 AM -0400 Peter Selinger 
> <selinger at mathstat.dal.ca> wrote:
> > Hi,
> >
> > I noticed that multiple currencies in GnuCash do not work very well
> > with double-entry accounting. I have investigated the issue and
> > written a tutorial explaining how double-entry multi-currency
> > accounting should work. Perhaps someone may find this interesting:
> >
> > http://www.mathstat.dal.ca/~selinger/accounting/tutorial.html
> >
> > I have also written a fairly detailed critique of multi-currency
> > accounting in GnuCash, with some suggestions for how it could be
> > improved. Unlike the tutorial above, this second document is specific
> > to GnuCash, but must be read after the tutorial:
> >
> > http://www.mathstat.dal.ca/~selinger/accounting/gnucash.html
> >
> > I hope someone will find this useful, and perhaps even implement it.
> > Comments?
> Thanks very much for writing these.  I've felt for some time that I 
> didn't really understand how to handle multiple currencies but hadn't 
> researched it much.  I'm not an accountant, but your explanation makes 
> a lot of sense.
> In addition to the changes you suggest to make Gnucash handle multiple 
> currencies better, you mention two bugs.  I submitted patches to fix 
> both of these some time ago, but neither has been applied to the trunk 
> yet.
> Your bug 410604 (which is about a split that is invalid because it has 
> a zero split:quantity and non-zero split:value) seems to be a duplicate 
> of 335101 (although I didn't realize that until I stepped through the 
> code in gdb so I wouldn't have expected you to notice this).  I 
> submitted a patch to fix 335101 last September.  I think the patch is 
> correct and safe, but I don't think anyone has looked at it yet.  The 
> same patch also fixes 410604.
> You also mentioned that the balance sheet report doesn't compute 
> unrealized gains correctly.  This is the subject of bug 131623.  I 
> attached a patch to this bug last June which improves things a lot. 
> With this patch, the balance sheet report for your sample file 
> table2.2.xac is correct.  I realize that this is not your main point, 
> but it is an improvement.  This change is less trivial than the one 
> above, but I also think it is safe and should be applied.
> -- 
> Mike Alexander           mta at umich.edu
> Ann Arbor, MI            PGP key ID: BEA343A6

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