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Finances with tags in CLI

Project description

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Missing a practical and easy-to-learn solution to keep track of your finances? Use tagcash to do it with simple text files!

TagCash is a little hack that I’m currently using after trying several solutions like GnuCash and Financisto. These are some of the features that I was missing and that are found in TagCash:

  • As simple as editing text files;

  • Text files are easy to sync between devices and people;

  • Simple CLI;

  • Quickly copy and paste statements from CLI to e-mail;

  • Simple and short Python source code.

Quick Start

Let’s choose 2 tags: wallet, and bank for your checking account. Now, write the following in a file (e.g.: finances.txt):

2018-01-13  100  Starting balance  bank
2018-01-14   40  Withdrawal        wallet,-bank

As there’s no starting balance for wallet, it will be $0.00. In the second line, there is a - (minus) sign next to the bank tag to make it -40 in the bank ledger. Now, let’s see what tagcash does without any option:

~$ tagcash finances.txt
│ Date       │ Amount │ Balance │ Description       │
│ 2018-01-13 │ 100.00 │  100.00 │ Starting balance  │
│ 2018-01-14 │ -40.00 │   60.00 │ Withdrawal        │
│ Date       │ Amount │ Balance │ Description       │
│ 2018-01-14 │  40.00 │   40.00 │ Withdrawal        │


  • The parser is flexible. Just don’t use space in tags and separate them by comma;

  • Align as you wish. Use 1 or more spaces between fields (date, amount, …);

  • You can use as many files as you want;

  • There’s no need to keep the lines sorted by date. Thus, you can keep together all the monthly installments of a payment;

  • To choose tags, use for example --tags wallet (-t for short).

How to Install

Tested with Python >= 3.5: pip3 install tagcash.

Advanced Usage

To know how much money you have in total, including all specified tags, add the --all option:

$ tagcash --all finances.txt
┌All Tags────┬────────┬─────────┬───────────────────┐
│ Date       │ Amount │ Balance │ Description       │
│ 2018-01-13 │ 100.00 │  100.00 │ Starting balance  │
│ 2018-01-14 │ -40.00 │   60.00 │ Withdrawal        │
│ 2018-01-14 │  40.00 │  100.00 │ Withdrawal        │

As expected, because you withdrew money to your own wallet, the last table shows that you have $100 in total. To keep this overall balance consistent, adopt the simple rule: use negative numbers (or tags) whenever you spend money, and positive when you earn it.

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