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Tough Decisions on Financial Software

Techstination feature for Monday, September 20, 1999

Decisions, decisions. Which software package to buy to keep track of your money? I'm Fred Fishkin with Bootcamp, a report on computers and technology. Intuit has been the long time leader when it comes to consumer financial software packages. And the new version, Quicken 2000 adds some new investment features. It can automatically download the latest info on your stocks and such anytime you're online. The competition is Microsoft's new Money 2000. Product manager Christine Winkel...

"We have a completely new investing area. For example, one of the things you can do is you can create a personal account on Money Central, which is the personal finance channel on MSN. So, combined with Money, you can be on top of your finances wherever you are. Perhaps you have a bill that might be upcoming but you're not really quite sure what bill it is. Or you could be at work. Money could be on your home machine and you could go up to Money Central and you could see if you have an upcoming bill that's due."

Money Central is now free, by the way, for anyone to use. Another nifty new feature... when you download transactions from your bank, Money will automatically recognize the names of most companies you paid and put each item in the appropriate category.

"Money will now recognize more than half a million business names in the U.S.

It may not be enough to get Quicken users to switch over, but it looks like Microsoft is finally giving Intuit a run for its money.