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How to Download TSP into Quicken

by Ryan Guina

There is no direct way to download the Thrift Savings Plan into Quicken from the TSP website, but there is a work around. These instructions are from Allen at Middleriver.net (site no longer available). (Read the Thrift Savings Plan’s reasons why you can not download the TSP into Quicken from the TSP site.)

You can manually input the data line by line, or you can import all of the data at one time (recommended!). Here is how to do the work around and import the TSP data into Quicken:

  1. Open Quicken and create a new investment. Here is how to create a new file in Quicken.
  2. Open “Investment Center” located in left tool bar. This displays each of your investment and accounts.
  3. Open “Portfolio” on top tool-bar.
  4. Select the account, and right click. Select “Edit Security.”
  5. Change the Symbol to something easy to remember, but that does not conflict with an existing security name (i.e. any official ticker name). Use the following fund names if you want to use the files provided by Allen at his website:
    • C Fund = TSPCF
    • F Fund = TSPFF
    • G Fund = TSPGF
    • I Fund = TSPIF
    • S Fund = TSPSF
    • L 2040 = TSPL40F
    • L 2030 = TSPL30F
    • L 2020 = TSPL20F
    • L 2010 = TSPL10F
    • L INCOME = TSPLIF
  6. Go to the TSP website. Click on “Share Prices.”
  7. Cut and paste the quarter’s worth of data into Excel.
  8. Open a new spreadsheet and put the fund-symbol you used in Step 5 in column A. In column B list the date. In column C, list the TSP price. Make sure that the date (column B) is in the M/DD/YYYY format. To do this, right-click on column and choose correct format under “Format Cells.”
  9. Save the file as a CVS (comma delimited).
  10. Import the file into Quicken under File-> Import -> Import Prices. Type the name of the file and click OK. Note: “Import Prices” will only show up if you have clicked on “Investing Center” on the tool-bar on the left side of the screen.
    • Quicken does not have a file browser so it is easiest to save the csv file into the root directory (c:\) so when you type the file name in to quicken, it is just c:\tsp.csv .
  11. Repeat for each fund.
  12. Or, replace steps 6-9 and download the all of the funds in a consolidated file from TSPTalk.com. (The download appears at the bottom of the post.) With this file, which is updated quarterly, you only need to import one file and you should have all the historical prices for C,F,G,I,S all the way back to 2003. The L-funds started in Aug of 2005 so the data from those are included starting then. After completing step 12, complete step 10 to import into Quicken.
  13. Done!

The author of Middleriver.net is a Soldier in the US Army. He has an amusing post about a C-130 ride when he was deployed to the Middle East. I find it interesting to hear a Soldier’s side of the experience because until recently, I was a C-130 mechanic in the USAF.

His story about using the ‘facilities’ is all too true. While I was on a recovery flight to Afghanistan, I had to show the comedian Drew Carey how to use it. I’m sure Allen and I have been to many of the same places. Maybe even at the same time! Thanks to Allen for providing the millions of TSP users his files and instructions, and more importantly, thanks for his service to his country. :)

Note: I do not know how to import TSP files into MS Money. I am sure there is a similar method, but I have never used MS Money so I do not know for sure. Does anyone out there know how to do it?


Published or updated March 1, 2011.
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1 Allen

Hi Ryan,
No problem on posting the TSP to Quicken HOWTO on your site. It is not exactly the most obvious solution but after I figured it out it is pretty easy. I just hope other people will find it useful too.

The C-130 flight- what I didn’t say was that the Air Force mechanics that were on board probably saved us from having to do an emergency landing in a very unfortunate place (use your imagination and draw a line from Qatar to Afghanistan)… They were hero’s in my book!

-Allen

2 Ryan

I made that flight a few times. There aren’t any nice stops in between! I’m glad you guys made it safely!

In my book, all the people serving over there are heroes. ;)

3 Jeff

Your method works for importing the share prices, but does nothing for importing the purchase transactions. I am much more concerned with entering the transactions than the daily share prices. Besides the transaction prices serve to update the share prices on the days they occur.

Big Red Consulting sells an Excel add-on that creates a QIF file that can then be imported into Quicken. http://www.bigredconsulting.com/aboutofxwriter.htm. To get the information into Excel, I copy and paste the text of the transactions from the pdf of a statement into a text file and modify that into the format required by the Excel add-on. It’s a bit tedious and the add-on is a bit expensive ($49), but it works well and it saves a lot of time and brain-numbing keyboarding compared to entering all the transactions manually.

4 Ryan

Thanks for the info, Jeff. That looks like a good tool. I only have a limited amount of TSP entries because I’ve been out of the military for a few years now, so this won’t be a good match for my situation. But for people who are still in the military or government service and have a lot of data, this tool can be very useful!

5 Billy

I have created an excel spread sheet that can import daily fund price from the TSP website. There are some things that must be updated manually, but I have managed to get pretty much all of the formulas correct. If you are interested in trying it out let me know. (Any suggestions for improvements are greatly appreciated.)

6 Charlie Brown

TSP data won’t go to Quicken because the Federal Thrift Investment Board won’t let members learn of the farce – the TSP doesn’t operate on a FIFO basis, as do all ERISA plans. If a member rebalances any amount, the entire account is SOLD and the proceeds from the sale go towards a dollar rebalancing. In ERISA retirement savings plans, only the First-In lots are sold and the proceeds are invested into different (mutual) funds based on how the participant redirected the rebalancing.
This totally flys in the face of the lies the FTIB/TSP told about excessive trading costs incurred. Think about it – if you only wanted to rebalance $5,000, then why does FTIB/TSP make you TRANSACT your whole account (say $100,000) and then reinvest (i.e., TRANSACT) your entire account balance into fund families based on that day’s close-of-business share pricing. Screwed in upmarkets, very kind in down markets – if you think rebound will come.
Just wait – the FTIB/TSP wants to provide mutual fund accounts. More undue transactions and transaction costs – grifted from us.
Quicken does specific sales. Yes, it gets complicated and that’s why Quicken is still deficient.

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