Manage, track and analyse your spending in Excel
Liam Bastick looks at a new feature in Excel that allows users to track money and spending, as well as the new smart templates that turn any data into digestible information.
In the current environment, we think it's fair to say there are a few people wanting to keep tabs on their spending and searching for free templates.
Microsoft has announced there is now Money in Excel (alas, not literally). Aimed chiefly at personal users, it’s provided to Microsoft 365 subscribers. It is a new feature that will allow you to manage, track and analyse your money and spending in Excel, using financial summaries and data visualisations.
This feature will allow you to connect your bank and credit card accounts to Money in Excel, so you can import transactions and account balances automatically and create a personalised summary workbook (you might wish to password protect this file!).
Money in Excel can help you recognise and improve your spending habits by providing insights on your spending and proactive alerts about price changes for recurring payments, bank fees, overdraft warnings, and more. It would be good if it will help me - every time I try and calculate a summary of my debt I get the 'Not Enough Resources to Display' error...
Money in Excel will start to become available in the coming months in the US first.
New data types and smart templates coming to Excel
Let's be honest: we all use Excel for many different things, business and personal, simple to complex. Power Query and Power Pivot have helped us to find, aggregate, organise and refresh our data in Excel, but it can still take a while to construct.
But it's getting simpler every day.
Microsoft recently announced another way to interact with your data. New data types are coming. With these new data types, it will become even easier to turn your collated data into digestible information as Excel provides deeper insight for more than 100 topics. These include food, movies, places, chemistry, and even Pokémon (come on everyone, get a life!).
All you have to do to save time is convert your plain text and numbers into a new data type and Excel will surface both rich visual and interactive data cards and images that provide a better representation of your data.
Microsoft has provided an example:
Say you want to start keeping better track of your nutrition. Simply enter a food like “avocado” and by converting it to a Food data type, Excel will help you access its nutritional information. If you are vegan, maybe your family is considering adopting a dog (no, we are not suggesting you eat a dog). You can evaluate different types of breeds using the Animal data type, which provides you with images, facts and their temperaments, so you can easily create a table to compare them.
With data types, the associated information may be easily updated, so you always have the latest and relevant data. Right now, anyone may access the Stocks and Geography data types in Excel for the web. However, Microsoft 365 subscribers will have exclusive access to the over 100 new data types powered by Wolfram Alpha. As a Microsoft 365 subscriber, data types will give you the opportunity to:
- Easily gather, organise and analyse the information you need in one place without the hassle of finding, copying and refreshing the data
- Use new smart templates with data types to do more. They will help you prepare to move to a new city, track your nutrition, etc.
The new data types and smart templates will be available to Office Insiders shortly and to Microsoft 365 Personal and Family subscribers in English in the coming months.
If you'd like to learn more about Excel, Liam Bastick is involved with a massive event which has more than 60 experts in everyone's favourite spreadsheet tool. Excel virtually global runs from Tuesday 21 July until Thursday 30 July and caters for all abilities. For more information on this Excel event, click this link.
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Recognised by Microsoft as one of 104 Most Valuable Professionals (MVPs) in Excel worldwide by Microsoft, Liam has over 30 years’ experience in financial model development/auditing, valuations, M&A, strategy, training and consultancy. He has headed Ernst & Young’s modelling team in Melbourne and was an Assistant Director in their...