Find duplicate transactions

Ken kmailuk at
Sat Nov 28 11:19:25 EST 2009

Hi David,

Thanks for your very detailed reply.  What you write makes sense with
regards to matching transactions.  My case is a bit more complicated.

Instead of Bank A and Bank B, I should have written Account A and
Account B as they are both at the same bank.  Further, when I download
the OFX file from my bank both accounts are in the same file.  When I
import the OFX into GnuCash, it creates:
(1) in Account A, a transaction for "Transfer from Account B"
(2) in Account B, a transaction for "Transfer to Account A"

This causes duplicate transactions and there does not seem to be an
easy way to get GnuCash to match these duplicates.  I suppose one
option might be to download each account separately in QIF format.

In any case, I was curious to know if there already existed an easy
way to find and match these duplicates.  (Perhaps my bank structures
its OFX transaction details incorrectly for usual types of matching).
I was thinking that one way might be a tool for comparing transactions
by date (+/- x number of days) and value and ignoring the subject line
(and potentially useful when the account is "Imbalance" to try to find
its matching transaction elsewhere).

Anyway, I think I will simply download the accounts separately for now.


2009/11/28 David T. <sunfish62 at>:
> Ken--
> I don't know if anyone else has answered this yet.
> There are a couple of suggestions I can make:
> I guess from your email that you are NOT entering your transactions manually as you go, entering both parts of the split for each transaction as you go. Let me know if I have this wrong...
> For importing transactions from bank A, you should endeavor to fill in or match your imported transactions in the druid. This is true for both QIF and OFX import, but is slightly different in each. I use OFX mostly because the matching seems better. You should do this because you are teaching Gnucash how it should try to match future imported transactions. [You may have to ask Gnucash to use Bayesian matching for this to work. Check the preferences for this]. In the OFX import process, you are presented with a list of the transactions and how they're going to be assigned to accounts. Double-clicking on a transaction allows you to select a destination account (it won't handle multiple splits, which I leave in Imbalance, and fix later). Once you accept all the transactions, you should be left with very few with Imbalance splits.
> Assuming this to be true, when you now import from bank B, there should be transactions that match, which you won't import (OFX) or MATCH (QIF). The match part of the QIF druid is a little opaque; you must actually tell Gnucash to match the incoming transaction to the existing transaction. That's the tricky part. Since I don't use the QIF importer that much, you should experiment and see what happens.
> HTH,
> David
> --- On Thu, 11/26/09, Ken <kmailuk at> wrote:
>> From: Ken <kmailuk at>
>> Subject: Find duplicate transactions
>> To: gnucash-user at
>> Date: Thursday, November 26, 2009, 8:08 AM
>> Hi.  I am quite new to GnuCash
>> and have some question with regards to
>> finding duplicate transactions.  Is there an easy way
>> to do it?  For
>> instance, if I have lots of transfers from my account at
>> Bank A to my
>> account at Bank B and download the transactions I appear to
>> have
>> duplicate entries in both account.  Bank A shows the
>> withdrawal with
>> an "Imbalance" as the offsetting transaction. Bank B shows
>> a deposit
>> with an "Imbalance" as the offsetting transaction.
>> There does not
>> seem to be an easy way for me to quickly find and delete
>> these
>> duplicates.
>> It would be nice if there were a search tool that looked
>> for all
>> transactions which have "similar" transactions. That might
>> be defined
>> as where two transactions have transactions values with,
>> say, 1% of
>> each other and dates within, say, 5 days of each
>> other.  I could then
>> go through this list of "similar" transactions and delete
>> the
>> duplicates.
>> Unless there is already a better way to do so?
>> Thanks,
>> Ken
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