General guidance setting up multiple stock market accounts

I am interested in some very, very general guidance on which Customize options would be useful or recommended for stock market investment / trade accounts. I think just a list of which Customize options to check might be enough for me.

Background Information

I have about 4 investment / trading accounts at one institution, and 2 investment / trading accounts at another institution. There’s reasons to have so many accounts. For example, one is my retirement account, another is my wife’s retirement account, another is not a retirement account, and so on.

In QuickBooks I set up separate files (businesses) for each investment trading account, and one more business that had an asset account for each of the businesses. Maybe this is department accounting, because all these businesses are one entity, me. So, I see this same kind of set up could work in Manager Accounting. But I am wondering if setting up as one business would work and could be practical. Maybe there is some way I could use tracking codes. Individual stocks would be inventory items. Different stock brokerage accounts would be different warehouses.

If I can track all in one business, then I would not have to update the several main business asset-investment accounts to match the net worth balance in each of the sub-businesses (departments) that is to say stock brokerage accounts.

I need to track margin (a liability account) separately for each brokerage account. And sometimes I own the same stock in more than one account. So, 100 shares of ABC stock could be in Warehouse A (i.e. brokerage A) and 2,500 shares of the same ABC stock could be in Warehouse B (i.e. brokerage B).


  1. Is the tracking of stock trades in multiple brokerages and multiple accounts something that would be practical to set up in one Manager Accounting business? Or, do you think more practical to set up as a main business and several separate sub-businesses. To Manager Accounting, a sub-business would be the same as any other business. The “sub” part is conceptual.

  2. If the answer to #1 is yes, then which Customize options would I need or be recommended?

You can try the Special Accounts module in case it meets your requirements.

As all transactions are generally in cash, you wouldn’t need Customers, Sales Invoices, Suppliers, Purchase Invoices and associated quotes & orders.

The main ones in addition to the default four would be
Cash Accounts - for the trading accounts
Inventory Items - for the shareholdings
Special Accounts - to group particular items
Capital Accounts - representing the sub-business (or alternatively direct BS Accounts)

In addition you need to review particular items under Settings, such as Inventory Locations, chart of accounts and perhaps capital sub-accounts.

The biggest consideration is setting up the P&L due to the different income sources

The below topic includes a detail discussion and examples

I am indeed glad that I asked here. I did not even consider the Special Accounts. Thank you for understanding my question. This may be enough for me to set up a working system because seems like Manager Accounting is very intuitive to me. I think anyone with at least a first course in accounting or equivalent would find Manager Accounting intuitive.