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beancount: Double-Entry Accounting from Text Files

A double-entry bookkeeping computer language that lets you define financial transaction records in a text file, read them in memory, generate a variety of reports from them, and provides a web interface.

Documentation can be read at:

Documentation authoring happens on Google Docs, where you can contribute by requesting access or commenting on individual documents. An index of all source documents is available here:

There's a mailing-list dedicated to Beancount, please post questions there, so others can share in the responses. More general discussions about command-line accounting also occur on the Ledger mailing-list so you might be interested in that group as well.

You can obtain the source code from the official Git repository on Github:

See the Installing Beancount document for more details.

There are three versions

  • Version 3 (branch master): The in-development next version of Beancount since June 2020. This is unstable and you want to use version 2 below. The scope of changes is described in this document.
  • Version 2 (branch v2): The current stable version of Beancount, in maintenance mode as of July 2020. This was a complete rewrite of the first version, which introduced a number of constraints and a new grammar and much more. Use this now.
  • Version 1 (branch v1): The original version of Beancount. Development on this version halted in 2013. This initial version was intended to be similar to and partially compatible with Ledger. Do not use this.

Tickets can be filed at on the Github project page:

Copyright (C) 2007-2024 Martin Blais. All Rights Reserved.

This code is distributed under the terms of the "GNU GPLv2 only". See COPYING file for details.

Beancount has found itself being useful to many users, companies, and foundations since I started it around 2007. I never ask for money, as my intent with this project is to build something that is useful to me first, as well as for others, in the simplest, most durable manner, and I believe in the genuinely free and open stance of Open Source software. Though its ends are utilitarian - it is about doing my own accounting in the first order - it is also a labor of love and I take great pride in it, pride which has pushed me to add the polish so that it would be usable and understandable by others. This is one of the rare areas of my software practice where I can let my desire for perfection and minimalism run untamed from the demands of time and external constraints.

Many people have asked where they can donate for the project. If you would like to give back, you can send a donation via Wise (preferably):

or PayPal at:

Your donation is always appreciated in any amount, and while the countless hours spent on building this project are impossible to match, the impact of each donation is much larger than its financial import. I truly appreciate every person who offers one; software can be a lonely endeavour, and those donations as well as words of appreciation keep reminding me of the positive impact my side projects can have on others. I feel gratitude for all users of Beancount.

Thank you!

Martin Blais <>