Imbalance account

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Imbalance account

Pete Haworth
My Imbalance-USD account is showing a negative balance. It's all in one
transaction in that account and when I open the split for it, it points me
to a deposit transaction in my bank account.  However, when I open the
split on that account, everything is in balance and there is no entry for
the Imbalance account.

Any ideas?

Pete
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Re: Imbalance account

Colin Law
On 13 July 2016 at 17:35, Pete Haworth <[hidden email]> wrote:
> My Imbalance-USD account is showing a negative balance. It's all in one
> transaction in that account and when I open the split for it, it points me
> to a deposit transaction in my bank account.  However, when I open the
> split on that account, everything is in balance and there is no entry for
> the Imbalance account.

Open it in the imbalance acct then click the toolbar button labelled
Split.  That should show you all the splits in that transaction.  You
should see the same thing if you select it in the bank acct register
and click the Split button.  If not then you are not looking at the
same transaction.

Colin
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Re: Imbalance account

Pete Haworth
Thanks.  Looked more closely and found the transaction in my bank account,
but the only entry in it is the posting to the Imbalance account, nothing
else.  Should I delete it?

On Wed, Jul 13, 2016 at 1:40 PM Colin Law <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On 13 July 2016 at 17:35, Pete Haworth <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > My Imbalance-USD account is showing a negative balance. It's all in one
> > transaction in that account and when I open the split for it, it points
> me
> > to a deposit transaction in my bank account.  However, when I open the
> > split on that account, everything is in balance and there is no entry for
> > the Imbalance account.
>
> Open it in the imbalance acct then click the toolbar button labelled
> Split.  That should show you all the splits in that transaction.  You
> should see the same thing if you select it in the bank acct register
> and click the Split button.  If not then you are not looking at the
> same transaction.
>
> Colin
>
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Re: Imbalance account

Mike or Penny Novack-2
In reply to this post by Pete Haworth
On 7/13/2016 12:35 PM, Pete Haworth wrote:
> My Imbalance-USD account is showing a negative balance. It's all in one
> transaction in that account and when I open the split for it, it points me
> to a deposit transaction in my bank account.  However, when I open the
> split on that account, everything is in balance and there is no entry for
> the Imbalance account.
>
> Any ideas?
>
> Pete
Look again.

With computers, when what you are seeing is impossible, one of your
assumptions about what is true is wrong.

Michael
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Liz
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Re: Imbalance account

Liz
On Wed, 13 Jul 2016 22:02:56 -0400
Mike or Penny Novack <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On 7/13/2016 12:35 PM, Pete Haworth wrote:
> > My Imbalance-USD account is showing a negative balance. It's all in
> > one transaction in that account and when I open the split for it,
> > it points me to a deposit transaction in my bank account.  However,
> > when I open the split on that account, everything is in balance and
> > there is no entry for the Imbalance account.
> >
> > Any ideas?
> >
> > Pete  
> Look again.
>
> With computers, when what you are seeing is impossible, one of your
> assumptions about what is true is wrong.
>
> Michael

something to try
(having saved the file)

go to Imbalance, use "Jump" to reach the other account.
if its still the deposit in the bank account, try deleting that
transaction.


Liz
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Re: Imbalance account

Mike or Penny Novack-2
In reply to this post by Pete Haworth
On 7/13/2016 4:55 PM, Pete Haworth wrote:
> Thanks.  Looked more closely and found the transaction in my bank account,
> but the only entry in it is the posting to the Imbalance account, nothing
> else.  Should I delete it?
>
You are not understanding what causes assignment of an account to
Imbalance.h

Let's say you are entering a deposit transaction to your bank account.
The item (the check you were depositing) was you had from selling an old
bureau at a lawn sale. You entered the date, perhaps filled in what the
transaction was in the description, and the amount, then hit enter
WITHOUT having specified the other side of the transaction << I don't
know your CoA so can't say WHAT that account should have been, but with
double entry bookkeeping there is always another side >>  So not knowing
what else to do, gnucash put that into Imbalance. You correct by opening
that transaction and specifying the other account.

Or let's say this bank transaction was a check you had written to pay
your electric bill. Like above, you simply spaced filling in the other
side account Expense:Utilities:Electric  << again, that's just a guess,
I don't know YOUR CoA >>


If you don't understand what we mean by "other side of the transaction"
go back and reread the tutorial, because your problem is not having a
grasp of double entry.

Michael
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Re: Imbalance account

Colin Law
In reply to this post by Pete Haworth
On 13 July 2016 at 21:55, Pete Haworth <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Thanks.  Looked more closely and found the transaction in my bank account,
> but the only entry in it is the posting to the Imbalance account, nothing
> else.  Should I delete it?

That depends.  Did you in fact remove money from the bank account?  If
not then delete the transaction.  If you did then you just have to
edit it so that it goes to the correct account rather than imbalance.

Colin
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Re: Imbalance account

Pete Haworth
That's the strange thing.  On the same date as the Imbalance entry there is
a separate transaction with splits, one of which is for the same amount as
the Imbalance transaction but to a genuine account.  That transaction is
balanced.

It feels like I should delete the Imbalance account transaction.  I can
always add it back if it causes bad things to happen.

Pete

On Thu, Jul 14, 2016 at 9:15 AM Colin Law <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On 13 July 2016 at 21:55, Pete Haworth <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > Thanks.  Looked more closely and found the transaction in my bank
> account,
> > but the only entry in it is the posting to the Imbalance account, nothing
> > else.  Should I delete it?
>
> That depends.  Did you in fact remove money from the bank account?  If
> not then delete the transaction.  If you did then you just have to
> edit it so that it goes to the correct account rather than imbalance.
>
> Colin
>
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Re: Imbalance account

Colin Law
On 14 July 2016 at 17:20, Pete Haworth <[hidden email]> wrote:
> That's the strange thing.  On the same date as the Imbalance entry there is
> a separate transaction with splits, one of which is for the same amount as
> the Imbalance transaction but to a genuine account.  That transaction is
> balanced.
>
> It feels like I should delete the Imbalance account transaction.  I can
> always add it back if it causes bad things to happen.

It is nothing to do with feelings.  Look at the bank account register
and see whether the imbalance transaction is an extra transaction that
you did not mean to enter.  If so then delete it.  If not then don't
delete it, instead decide which account it should go to rather than
imbalance.

Colin
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Re: Imbalance account

Mike or Penny Novack-2
In reply to this post by Pete Haworth
On 7/14/2016 12:20 PM, Pete Haworth wrote:
> That's the strange thing.  On the same date as the Imbalance entry there is
> a separate transaction with splits, one of which is for the same amount as
> the Imbalance transaction but to a genuine account.  That transaction is
> balanced.
>
> It feels like I should delete the Imbalance account transaction.  I can
> always add it back if it causes bad things to happen.
>
> Pete
Absolutely go back and reread the tutorial. You are simply not getting
the fundamentals of double entry bookkeeping.

It might not be THAT transaction (the split to which you refer and say
is in balance and has a line for the same amount properly assigned to an
account. But there must be SOME transaction you entered somewhere(in
some account)  which had that amount but for which you failed to specify
the other account.

Go to that transaction in Imbalance. What does it say is the other
account? Go to that account and find the transaction (it will have
IMBALANCE as its "other account". THAT is where you should make the
correction (specify an account) or delete the transaction << if this was
a partially entered transaction that you abandoned but then entered
correctly, say with that split >>

Michael D Novack
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Re: Imbalance account

David Carlson-4
In reply to this post by Pete Haworth






    Pete,What you describe sounds to me to be similar towhat happens if you have a payment to a mortgage lender from a checking account for e example.  When you make the payment you would probably generate a transaction with splits for principal, interest, escrow and possibly other items.  Then, when you download transactions from the bank, GnuCash may fail to match the payment to the correct existing transaction and create a new transaction with a transfer to Imbalance
That results in two transactions with the same amount and similar description and date.  That happens to me a lot.  Often you can catch it during the import, but sometime GnuCash stubbornly refuses to include the correct transaction in the list of possible matches.
When that happens to me I just delete the imported duplicate.
David C
Sent from my LG G Pad 7.0 LTE, an AT&T 4G LTE tablet.  




------ Original message------From: Mike or Penny NovackDate: Thu, Jul 14, 2016 7:42 PMTo: [hidden email];Subject:Re: Imbalance account
On 7/14/2016 12:20 PM, Pete Haworth wrote:> That's the strange thing.  On the same date as the Imbalance entry there is> a separate transaction with splits, one of which is for the same amount as> the Imbalance transaction but to a genuine account.  That transaction is> balanced.>> It feels like I should delete the Imbalance account transaction.  I can> always add it back if it causes bad things to happen.>> PeteAbsolutely go back and reread the tutorial. You are simply not getting the fundamentals of double entry bookkeeping.It might not be THAT transaction (the split to which you refer and say is in balance and has a line for the same amount properly assigned to an account. But there must be SOME transaction you entered somewhere(in some account)  which had that amount but for which you failed to specify the other account.Go to that transaction in Imbalance. What does it say is the other account? Go to that account and find the transaction (it will have IMBALANCE as its "other account". THAT is where you should make the correction (specify an account) or delete the transaction << if this was a partially entered transaction that you abandoned but then entered correctly, say with that split >>Michael D Novack_______________________________________________gnucash-user mailing [hidden email]://lists.gnucash.org/mailman/listinfo/gnucash-user-----Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.

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Re: Imbalance account

csmbtreasurer
In reply to this post by Mike or Penny Novack-2
I'm fully aware of how to use a computer having spent my entire working life in the business of writing computer software.  In fact, you missed out a third possibility which is that there is a bug in the software.
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Re: Imbalance account

csmbtreasurer
In reply to this post by Liz
Thanks, that's pretty much what I did, Deleting the mysterious transaction cleared everything up and all my accounts are in balance.
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Re: Imbalance account

csmbtreasurer
In reply to this post by Mike or Penny Novack-2
I can assure you, I am very familiar with double entry bookkeeping and have used several different software accounting packages.  The whole point of my question is that I have no idea how this transaction appeared in my register.  It's possible I started to enter an imbalanced transaction and forgot that I did it which would explain what is going on.

I'm a new user of gnucash and still getting used to how it works but I will say that all the other accounting packages I've used don't allow an unbalanced transaction to be entered which I think is the way gnucash should work.
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Re: Imbalance account

csmbtreasurer
In reply to this post by Colin Law
I deleted it and all is OK.
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Re: Imbalance account

csmbtreasurer
In reply to this post by David Carlson-4
Haven't tried importing any transactions yet but thanks for the heads up.
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Re: Imbalance account

Colin Law
In reply to this post by csmbtreasurer
On 15 July 2016 at 21:40, csmbtreasurer <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I can assure you, I am very familiar with double entry bookkeeping and have
> used several different software accounting packages.  The whole point of my
> question is that I have no idea how this transaction appeared in my
> register.  It's possible I started to enter an imbalanced transaction and
> forgot that I did it which would explain what is going on.
>
> I'm a new user of gnucash and still getting used to how it works but I will
> say that all the other accounting packages I've used don't allow an
> unbalanced transaction to be entered which I think is the way gnucash should
> work.
>

Since you have not quoted the previous message nobody knows which
message you are replying to so they don't know who the 'you' that you
refer to is.  You did the same on the other posts you have just made.
This is a mailing list not a forum (though you may be accessing it via
a forum-like interface).

Gnucash does not allow the entry of an imbalanced transaction, it
added a matching entry in the imbalance account specifically to avoid
that possibility.

Colin
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Liz
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Re: Imbalance account

Liz
On Fri, 15 Jul 2016 22:32:52 +0100
Colin Law <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Since you have not quoted the previous message nobody knows which
> message you are replying to so they don't know who the 'you' that you
> refer to is.  You did the same on the other posts you have just made.
> This is a mailing list not a forum (though you may be accessing it via
> a forum-like interface).

In my threaded email software I can see the connection. I can also see
that this email address is not the same as the email address which was
used before.

Liz
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Re: Imbalance account

Mike or Penny Novack-2
In reply to this post by csmbtreasurer
On 7/15/2016 4:35 PM, csmbtreasurer wrote:
> Thanks, that's pretty much what I did, Deleting the mysterious transaction
> cleared everything up and all my accounts are in balance.
>
It would do THAT (put your accounts into balance*) even if you were
wrong to delete the transaction. In other words, that there was some
REAL financial activity that is now not recorded in your books. Not
entering (or improperly deleting) a transaction is an error, but not one
that will put the books out of balance.

And however experienced you might be with computers, how experienced
with double entry bookkeeping. Could you manage a set of books old
fashioned pen and ink on paper? Or using a spreadsheet with columns like
would be on ledger paper?

I am very experienced with computers, professionally, and with financial
systems in particular, several decades spent in the cypher mines. Sorry,
but when something appears impossible, the FIRST thing to do is not jump
to thinking it a bug but look for the human error. Especially when you
are encountering a problem that seems to work just fine for everybody else.

Michael D Novack


* Your books WERE in balance before too. You misunderstand what the
Imbalance account is (misunderstand double entry). It is an ACCOUNT, a
"default account" that gnucash is using when no account was entered. In
other words, the account used when "user filed to specify an account for
this amount".
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Re: Imbalance account

Mike or Penny Novack-2
In reply to this post by csmbtreasurer
On 7/15/2016 4:40 PM, csmbtreasurer wrote:

>
> I'm a new user of gnucash and still getting used to how it works but I will
> say that all the other accounting packages I've used don't allow an
> unbalanced transaction to be entered which I think is the way gnucash should
> work.
  As somebody who has designed systems like this, let me explain WHY the
choice the gnucash developers used might be good.

You propose that when entering a transaction, if an account was left
out, the process STOP at that point and not allow proceeding until an
account supplied. But what if AT THAT MOMENT you don't know the right
account to use. Suppose you are the bookkeeper entering transaction and
at that moment you see an amount that doesn't really belong in any of
the existing accounts. Yes, guncash would allow you to create an account
on the fly, but ........

1) The new account might imply some rearrangement of the CoA, some
thought about the new hierarchy.
2) YOU might not even be a person authorized to make the decision (I
said bookkeeper, not treasurer, might not be the same person, and even
the treasurer might need board of directors approval.

The use of Imbalance allows the transaction to be entered and the matter
resolved later.  When I am preparing the quarterly reports, one of the
steps in the process is to make sure nothing LEFT in either Imbalance or
Orphan, in other words, nothing still needing resolution.

Michael D Novack
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