Stock transactions

Dale Alspach
Fri, 12 Jul 2002 17:35:39 -0500

This has been discussed on this list. Gnucash is cheating when it revalues
assets by using the price editor. When the price (value) goes up the gain
should be put into an unrealized gain income account. If it goes down the
amount of the loss would go into an unrealized loss expense account. When
the item is sold then these unrealized gains and losses should be
reconciled and the net transferred to a realized gain or loss account. The
proceeds from the sale go to some asset account such as the brokerage

One could circumvent this problem (not very elegantly) by "selling" each
asset periodically and placing the proceeds in a holding account (asset).
Use the price editor to update the prices. (It is important that all of
the accounts which get values from the price editor be zero before this
is done.)  Compute the gain or loss from the change in value and execute
the transaction from the holding account and matching unrealized gain
or loss account. Then "buy" the same number of shares of each at the new value
(price) using the holding account. This should return the holding account
to zero.  

This would be a mild nuisance for someone with a small number of mutual
funds, stocks, etc., but would be ridiculous for an active trader or someone
with many different holdings. I think one of the developers mentioned
trying to fix this problem in a future release.

Dale Alspach