This doc is for version 1.15.2 .
CSV - how hledger reads CSV data, and the CSV rules file format
Converting CSV to transactions requires some special conversion rules. These do several things:
they describe the layout and format of the CSV data
they can customize the generated journal entries using a simple templating language
they can add refinements based on patterns in the CSV data, eg categorizing transactions with more detailed account names.
When reading a CSV file named
FILE.csv, hledger looks for a conversion
rules file named
FILE.csv.rules in the same directory. You can
override this with the
--rules-file option. If the rules file does not
exist, hledger will auto-create one with some example rules, which
you’ll need to adjust.
At minimum, the rules file must identify the date and amount fields. It’s often necessary to specify the date format, and the number of header lines to skip, also. Eg:
fields date, _, _, amount date-format %d/%m/%Y skip 1
A more complete example:
# hledger CSV rules for amazon.com order history # sample: # "Date","Type","To/From","Name","Status","Amount","Fees","Transaction ID" # "Jul 29, 2012","Payment","To","Adapteva, Inc.","Completed","$25.00","$0.00","17LA58JSK6PRD4HDGLNJQPI1PB9N8DKPVHL" # skip one header line skip 1 # name the csv fields (and assign the transaction's date, amount and code) fields date, _, toorfrom, name, amzstatus, amount, fees, code # how to parse the date date-format %b %-d, %Y # combine two fields to make the description description %toorfrom %name # save these fields as tags comment status:%amzstatus, fees:%fees # set the base account for all transactions account1 assets:amazon # flip the sign on the amount amount -%amount
For more examples, see Convert CSV files.
The following seven kinds of rule can appear in the rules file, in any
order. Blank lines and lines beginning with
; are ignored.
Skip this number of CSV records at the beginning. You’ll need this whenever your CSV data contains header lines. Eg:
# ignore the first CSV line skip 1
When your CSV date fields are not formatted like
YYYY.MM.DD), you’ll need to specify the format.
DATEFMT is a strptime-like date parsing
which must parse the date field values completely. Examples:
# for dates like "11/06/2013": date-format %m/%d/%Y
# for dates like "6/11/2013" (note the - to make leading zeros optional): date-format %-d/%-m/%Y
# for dates like "2013-Nov-06": date-format %Y-%h-%d
# for dates like "11/6/2013 11:32 PM": date-format %-m/%-d/%Y %l:%M %p
This (a) names the CSV fields, in order (names may not contain
whitespace; uninteresting names may be left blank), and (b) assigns them
to journal entry fields if you use any of these standard field names:
# use the 1st, 2nd and 4th CSV fields as the entry's date, description and amount, # and give the 7th and 8th fields meaningful names for later reference: # # CSV field: # 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 # entry field: fields date, description, , amount, , , somefield, anotherfield
This sets a journal entry field (one of the standard names above) to the
given text value, which can include CSV field values interpolated by
%CSVFIELDNAME) or 1-based position (
# set the amount to the 4th CSV field with "USD " prepended amount USD %4
# combine three fields to make a comment (containing two tags) comment note: %somefield - %anotherfield, date: %1
Field assignments can be used instead of or in addition to a field list.
Note, interpolation strips any outer whitespace, so a CSV value like
" 1 " becomes
1 when interpolated
This applies one or more field assignments, only to those CSV records matched by one of the PATTERNs. The patterns are case-insensitive regular expressions which match anywhere within the whole CSV record (it’s not yet possible to match within a specific field). When there are multiple patterns they can be written on separate lines, unindented. The field assignments are on separate lines indented by at least one space. Examples:
# if the CSV record contains "groceries", set account2 to "expenses:groceries" if groceries account2 expenses:groceries
# if the CSV record contains any of these patterns, set account2 and comment as shown if monthly service fee atm transaction fee banking thru software account2 expenses:business:banking comment XXX deductible ? check it
Include another rules file at this point.
RULESFILE is either an
absolute file path or a path relative to the current file’s directory.
# rules reused with several CSV files include common.rules
Consider adding this rule if all of the following are true: you might be processing just one day of data, your CSV records are in reverse chronological order (newest first), and you care about preserving the order of same-day transactions. It usually isn’t needed, because hledger autodetects the CSV order, but when all CSV records have the same date it will assume they are oldest first.
Each journal entry will have two postings, to
account2 respectively. It’s not yet possible to
generate entries with more than two postings. It’s conventional and
recommended to use
account1 for the account whose CSV we are reading.
A transaction amount must be set, in one of these ways:
amountfield assignment, which sets the first posting’s amount
(When the CSV has debit and credit amounts in separate fields:)
with field assignments for the
amount-outpseudo fields (both of them). Whichever one has a value will be used, with appropriate sign. If both contain a value, it might not work so well.
or implicitly by means of a balance assignment (see below).
There is some special handling for sign in amounts:
If an amount value is parenthesised, it will be de-parenthesised and sign-flipped.
If an amount value begins with a double minus sign, those will cancel out and be removed.
If the currency/commodity symbol is provided as a separate CSV field,
assign it to the
currency pseudo field; the symbol will be prepended
to the amount (TODO:
when there is an amount). Or, you can use an
amount field assignment for more control, eg:
fields date,description,currency,amount amount %amount %currency
CSV balance assertions/assignments¶
If the CSV includes a running balance, you can assign that to one of the
balance2. This will
generate a balance assertion (or if
the amount is left empty, a balance
assignment), on the first or second
posting, whenever the running balance field is non-empty. (TODO:
Reading multiple CSV files¶
You can read multiple CSV files at once using multiple
-f arguments on
the command line, and hledger will look for a correspondingly-named
rules file for each. Note if you use the
--rules-file option, this one
rules file will be used for all the CSV files being read.