Tracking your retirement fund in PocketSmith

Learn about the different options for adding your retirement funds and tracking contributions in PocketSmith 💰📈

Employer-sponsored retirement funds such as Kiwisaver, Superannuation, Pension schemes, and 401(k) are different to regular investment accounts as the contributions are usually processed as automatic deductions from your paycheck, and therefore do not appear as expense or transfer transactions within your bank account.

Depending on whether you add your retirement fund as a bank feed, an offline account, or as an asset, we'll look at the best ways to manage and track your contributions in PocketSmith as well as how to account for any losses or gains.
In this user guide

Options for adding your retirement fund to PocketSmith

There are three ways that a retirement fund can be added to PocketSmith:

  • As a bank feed account (if available)
  • As an offline account
  • As an asset

Which option is right for me?

The option that's right for you depends on a number of factors, including whether a bank feed is available for your retirement fund and whether or not you want to import the transactions into PocketSmith in order to include them in your budgets and reporting.

We've compiled a brief overview of each option below. Read on to learn more.

Adding your retirement fund as a bank feed account

This option is great for keeping an up-to-date balance in your Net worth and allows you to import the transactions that appear within your retirement fund for reporting purposes.

The advantages of adding your retirement fund as a bank feed account include:

  • the current balance of the fund will always be up to date
  • transactions within the account are automatically imported

However, please note that manual transactions reflecting any gains or losses will need to be added periodically in order for the historic balances to be accurate. 

Adding your retirement fund as an offline account

If there is no bank feed available for your retirement fund, but you'd still like to import or add the transactions within the account for reporting purposes then you may like to add your retirement fund as an offline account.

The advantages of adding your retirement fund as an offline account include:

  • can use bank files to import the majority of transactions
  • allows you to include the transactions in your income and expense reporting

However, please note that manual transactions reflecting any gains or losses will need to be added periodically in order for the current balance to be accurate.

Adding your retirement fund as an asset

This option may be suitable for you if you would like your retirement fund included in your net worth and you want to forecast its growth, but you don't want to report on the gains or losses as part of your Income & Expense Statement, or don't want the transactions from the account cluttering up your day-to-day income and expenses.

  • no need to add or import transactions, and therefore no need to worry about how they will affect your income & expense reporting
  • use a repeating budget to reflect your contributions. The budget will automatically update the asset balance accordingly.

Please note that balance adjustments reflecting any gains or losses will need to be added periodically in order to keep the balance up to date.


Managing your retirement fund as a bank feed account

Adding a bank feed account

If bank feed support is available for your retirement fund provider, and you decide you would like to add the fund to your PocketSmith as a bank feed account, then you can learn how to do this here: Adding a bank feed and establishing your accounts

Categorizing your transactions

Once your account has been added and the transactions imported, you'll need to determine how you'd like to report on the transactions and categorize them accordingly. 

If you'd like the contributions to show as income on your PocketSmith reports and budget figures, then you can assign the transactions to a regular income category, eg. Retirement contributions.

However, if you don't want your retirement contributions to show as part of your regular income and expense reporting or budget figures, then you'll just need to assign the transactions to a transfer category. You can learn how to create a transfer category here: Steps to create a transfer category. 

Similarly, any expense transactions can be assigned to their own category, eg. Retirement fund - fees. If you'd like to hide these transactions from your regular reporting, you'll just need to edit the category to be a transfer category.

Budgeting & forecasting

Add a repeating income budget to your Retirement fund account in order to reflect your regular contributions and include them in the account's forecast. 

For more detail on creating a budget please see: Creating a new budget

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Accounting for gains/losses

Gains and losses are not recorded as transactions within a retirement fund, however, you may wish to periodically add manual transactions to reflect any gains or losses in order to keep your historic balances accurate. 

Historic balances for bank feed accounts are calculated using the current bank feed balance as a starting point, with transaction data added and subtracted to determine any closing balances. This means that the current balance will be correct, however, the historic balances may be inaccurate due to the gains and losses not being included as transactions. 

To learn how to add manual transactions to an account please see: Manually add transactions to my account


Managing your retirement fund as an offline account

Creating an offline account

If you'd like to add your retirement fund as an offline account, you can choose to use bank files to import your transactions. If bank files are not available you can add transactions manually instead.

Categorizing your transactions

Once the transactions have been imported or added, you'll need to determine how you'd like to report on the transactions and categorize them accordingly. 

  • Including retirement fund transactions in your PocketSmith reporting:
    If you'd like the contributions to show as income on your PocketSmith reports and budget figures, then you can assign the transactions to a regular income category, eg.  Retirement contributions.

    Similarly, any expense transactions can be assigned to their own category, eg.  Retirement fund - fees. 
  • Excluding retirement fund transactions from your PocketSmith reporting:
    If you don't want your retirement contributions to show as part of your regular income and expense reporting or budget figures, then you'll just need to assign the transactions to their own  transfer categoryYou can learn how to create a transfer category here: Steps to create a transfer category.

    Similarly, any expense transactions can be assigned to their own transfer category, eg. Retirement fund - fees. 

Budgeting and forecasting

Add a repeating income budget to your Retirement fund account in order to reflect your regular contributions and include them in the account's forecast.

For more detail on creating a budget please see: Creating a new budget

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Accounting for gains/losses:

The balance for offline accounts is based on the starting balance set for the account and the transaction data. 

Because gains and losses do not show as transactions within a retirement fund, you'll need to periodically add manual transactions in order to update your balance. To learn how to add manual transactions please see: Manually add transactions to my account


Managing your retirement fund as an asset

Adding an asset

If you decide that you'd like to add your retirement fund as an asset, you can learn how to do this here: Adding an asset to Net Worth

Tracking your contributions using

Once the asset has been added, you're able to add a repeating income budget to reflect any contributions made to your retirement fund. The budget events will automatically update your balance accordingly.

To do this, you'll need to create a new category, eg. Retirement contributions. Because assets and liabilities do no have transactions assigned to them, it's best to set this category up as a transfer category so that your overall budgeted figures are not affected. 

Next, you'll need to create an income budget for your Retirement contributions category. To create a budget against an asset, select the asset from the drop-down for the option 'What account's this budget for'. For more detail please see: Creating a new budget

Updating the balance to account for gains/losses

In order to account for any gains or losses to your retirement fund, you'll need to periodically add a manual balance adjustment as outlined here: Updating the value of an asset or liability from the Calendar page


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