Updating the FTSE 100 symbol for Microsoft Money 2000

This content is 18 years old. I don't routinely update old blog posts as they are only intended to represent a view at a particular point in time. Please be warned that the information here may be out of date.

I use Microsoft Money 2000 to manage my home finances. It’s old (read out of support) and a bit confusing when it comes to investments, but it suits my needs and I don’t see any need to upgrade to the latest version right now.

One of Money’s many features is the ability to download stock quotes from MSN Money but mid-way through last year this stopped working properly, resulting in the following message when attempting to update online quotes:

Online Quotes and Exchange Rates:

Money was unable to retrieve a quote for FTSE (London). The symbol $US:FTSE is invalid. To correct an invalid or expired symbol, go to the Details for that investment from the Portfolio and correct or delete the symbol.

The problem is that versions of Money up to 2001 do not allow the investment symbols to be edited. A search of the microsoft.public.uk.money newsgroup turned up some useful information (along with lots of ranting about how Microsoft should fix this – they should, it’s easy enough but hey!) but with help from the advice in one particular thread, I got things working again.

  1. Firstly, I backed up my money data file (*.mny).
  2. Then, I downloaded a hex editor. The evaluation version of the one mentioned in the thread only handles 10MB files (mine was 13MB), so I used Cygnus Hex Editor (v2.50).
  3. Next, I used the Find Data function to search for the old symbol of 55 00 53 00 3A 00 46 00 54 00 53 00 45 (U.S.:.F.T.S.E.). In my data file, this appeared twice.
  4. I replaced both instances of the old symbol with 47 00 42 00 3A 00 55 00 4B 00 58 00 00 00 (G.B.:.U.K.X…) and saved the edited data file.
  5. After relaunching Money, I was able to successfully download FTSE data.

The less technical method of tracking the FTSE is to create an investment to watch, using the $UKX symbol. Whilst this works, it is quoted in pounds (not pence), so is inaccurate by a factor of 100, and doesn’t seem to allow comparisons (for instance, it is often useful to compare a stock against an index).

Now all I need to fix is that investment I made in March 2001, just before the markets took a tumble…

Stock market performance

5 thoughts on “Updating the FTSE 100 symbol for Microsoft Money 2000

  1. Mark

    I tried your fix for money 2000 for the FTSE symbol, but couldnt find the old symbol in HEX in my file. Any other ideas?

  2. Hi Martin,

    I had trouble finding it at first, but Cygnus Hex Editor had various methods of searching in it’s find dialog – I had to use the Find Data function. From memory (my PC with Money on it has gone away for repair this week), I think I pasted the US:FTSE text, which then became 55 53 3A 46 54 53 45 – I then had to edit the hex codes, adding the missing 00s to get 55 00 53 00 3A 00 46 00 54 00 53 00 45. After that, the find seemed to work okay.

    Hope this helps, Mark

  3. I did the mod to get around the FTSE index change in Money 2001 using the hex editor. However i only found one entry not two. It seems to be working OK though. I’m wondering if there is a way to add the FTSE 250 index or the FTSE all share index. I didn’t find that adding an index as a dummy share was very useful.
    Thanks for the great advice though.

  4. I failed with the text editing as Money 2000 returned a corrupted file error on trying to re-open the modified file. However, having re-ticked the FTSE 100 option in ‘prices to download’, the old symbol is now working again (Aug 2009)!

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