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An Emacs major mode for writing hledger journals and generating useful accounting reports.

Sample Reports


The external hledger program should be installed first, or most of the report features won't work.

This package is available on MELPA:

M-x package-install hledger-mode

If you are not installing from Melpa, to make hledger-mode available to your Emacs add it to load-path.

(add-to-list 'load-path "/path/to/hledger-mode/dir/")


;;; Basic configuration
(require 'hledger-mode)

;; To open files with .journal extension in hledger-mode
(add-to-list 'auto-mode-alist '("\\.journal\\'" . hledger-mode))

;; Provide the path to you journal file.
;; The default location is too opinionated.
(setq hledger-jfile "/path/to/your/journal-file.journal")

;;; Auto-completion for account names
;; For company-mode users,
(add-to-list 'company-backends 'hledger-company)

;; For auto-complete users,
(add-to-list 'ac-modes 'hledger-mode)
(add-hook 'hledger-mode-hook
    (lambda ()
        (setq-local ac-sources '(hledger-ac-source))))

;; For easily adjusting dates.
(define-key hledger-mode-map (kbd "<kp-add>") 'hledger-increment-entry-date)
(define-key hledger-mode-map (kbd "<kp-subtract>") 'hledger-decrement-entry-date)


For configuring various parameters, e.g. the accounts used for computing ratios in the overall report, M-x customize-group and customize the hledger group. For example, the Emergency Fund Ratio is computed with expenses incurred in accounts listed in the variable hledger-ratios-essential-expense-accounts.


I recommend the following key bindings:

;; Personal Accounting
(global-set-key (kbd "C-c e") 'hledger-jentry)
(global-set-key (kbd "C-c j") 'hledger-run-command)

Once you are in a report buffer after executing a command with hledger-run-command, press h to see the list of reports that you can have a look at. Press s in the overall report to see the meaning of the personal finance ratios for your report.

To enable email reporting, you would need to setup your email api credentials. You can set those up with M-x customize-group hledger.

Once you have done so, you can enable monthly email reporting on hledger-reporting-day with the following in your init.el:


Here is my configuration with `use-package' declarations:

(use-package hledger-mode
  :pin manual
  :after htmlize
  :load-path "packages/rest/hledger-mode/"
  :mode ("\\.journal\\'" "\\.hledger\\'")
  :commands hledger-enable-reporting
  (defun hledger/next-entry ()
    "Move to next entry and pulse."

  (defface hledger-warning-face
    '((((background dark))
       :background "Red" :foreground "White")
      (((background light))
       :background "Red" :foreground "White")
      (t :inverse-video t))
    "Face for warning"
    :group 'hledger)

  (defun hledger/prev-entry ()
    "Move to last entry and pulse."

  :bind (("C-c j" . hledger-run-command)
         :map hledger-mode-map
         ("C-c e" . hledger-jentry)
         ("M-p" . hledger/prev-entry)
         ("M-n" . hledger/next-entry))
  (setq hledger-jfile
        (expand-file-name "~/miscellany/personal/finance/accounting.journal")
        hledger-email-secrets-file (expand-file-name "secrets.el"
  ;; Expanded account balances in the overall monthly report are
  ;; mostly noise for me and do not convey any meaningful information.
  (setq hledger-show-expanded-report nil)

  (when (boundp 'my-hledger-service-fetch-url)
    (setq hledger-service-fetch-url

  (add-hook 'hledger-view-mode-hook #'hl-line-mode)
  (add-hook 'hledger-view-mode-hook #'center-text-for-reading)

  (add-hook 'hledger-view-mode-hook
            (lambda ()
              (run-with-timer 1
                              (lambda ()
                                (when (equal hledger-last-run-command
                                  ;; highlight frequently changing accounts
                                  (highlight-regexp "^.*\\(savings\\|cash\\).*$")
                                  (highlight-regexp "^.*credit-card.*$"

  (add-hook 'hledger-mode-hook
            (lambda ()
              (make-local-variable 'company-backends)
              (add-to-list 'company-backends 'hledger-company))))

(use-package hledger-input
  :pin manual
  :load-path "packages/rest/hledger-mode/"
  :bind (("C-c e" . hledger-capture)
         :map hledger-input-mode-map
         ("C-c C-b" . popup-balance-at-point))
  (defun popup-balance-at-point ()
    "Show balance for account at point in a popup."
    (if-let ((account (thing-at-point 'hledger-account)))
        (message (hledger-shell-command-to-string (format " balance -N %s "
      (message "No account at point")))

  (setq hledger-input-buffer-height 20)
  (add-hook 'hledger-input-post-commit-hook #'hledger-show-new-balances)
  (add-hook 'hledger-input-mode-hook #'auto-fill-mode)
  (add-hook 'hledger-input-mode-hook
            (lambda ()
              (make-local-variable 'company-idle-delay)
              (setq-local company-idle-delay 0.1))))

Auxiliary tools

You are welcome to use the web application hosted at for logging data while you are away from computer. You can use the command hledger-fetch-entries later on to get those entries into your journal file.

If you want real-time checking of your journal, you might want to install flycheck-hledger:



hledger-mode contains automated tests. You may run them by executing cask exec ert-runner.

You may need to install cask locally if you do not already have it installed, and run cask install to install any dependencies that you may be missing.


This project is new and improving. Please feel free to contribute to it. You might start with writing a document on contributing to the project or by refactoring it a bit [See hledger-reports.el. It's a mess.].