GnuCash for Israelis


I'm using GnuCash for my personal accounting in order to keep track of my money. It is a very useful program which is relatively easy to use, after you figure out the basic ideas.

I very quickly found that I'm way too lazy to hand enter the bank statements into GnuCash. I've started and stopped using GnuCash twice before I wrote the simple scripts I now use to do the imports.

Unfortunately for me the Israeli Banks and specifically Bank Hapoalim with which I work, do not provide a simple OFX or QIF export facilities, so I took a Perl script that was written to download the data from the Bank internet site, modified it to adapt it for my needs, which is simply to export the data in CSV format. I then wrote a Python script to convert the CSV data to QIF format. The QIF files are easilly imported into GnuCash with relatively very few keystrokes.

Since the bank statements are in Hebrew and GnuCash has troubles with Hebrew, I'm translating every description to Hebrew, this is done in two stages. First, I use the transliteration method of Uzi Ornan (link?), and then I transform known transliterations to easier to read words, part English and part Hebrew whatever is convenient for me at the time.

Currently I convert the regular bank statements, and the Israeli Credit Card charges, I still need to do International Credit Card payments and Stock actions. The step after that is to automate as much as possible and to do it from inside GnuCash itself.

Using the Scripts

Currently the scripts are disjointed, you first need to run the poalim script to download the data from the bank. You should have modified the script with your data in it.

After the files are in CSV format you need to run to convert them.

Sample session:

  ./poalim -d
  ./csv2qif Tnuot CSV
  gnucash -> Import QIF files