QuickBooks Desktop: Importing .ofx files

If you use QuickBooks Desktop you may want to import the records from your business checking account into QuickBooks. And like my bank, your bank may only provide downloads with a .ofx file extension instead of the .qbo files that QuickBooks expects. You may think it won’t be possible. Or you may pay for a software add-on do convert .ofx files to .qbo file format.

This is a fairly specific topic, but if you are in this situation, here is how you can import ofx files into QuickBooks, and save yourself from hand entering the records from your business checking account.

The idea is that you will download the ofx file once a month and import the data into QuickBooks desktop.

First, open the ofx file that you downloaded from your bank in a text editor. The first lines will look like this:




<ORG>Galaxy Plus

Add this line below the ‘LANGUAGE’ line


and then save the file and exit the text editor.

Lastly, just rename the file extension from ofx to .qbo and you are done.

On a PC with QuickBooks Desktop installed, you can double click this .qbo file and QuickBooks Desktop will open and the import process will begin.

Note that the ‘3000’ in the <INTU.BID>3000 line is an ID number assigned to a bank by Intuit, in this case 3000 means Wells Fargo. When you run the import, QuickBooks will think that the file came from Wells Fargo. The import process requires this line and the 3000 is used just to allow the import to be processed, but with the downside of faking which bank the file came from.

If you are reading this article, your bank doesn’t export .qbo files and probably doesn’t have an ID number from Intuit, so you should not expect the import process to show the correct bank. BUT, you can still pick which bank account in QBD the line items import into, so I don’t think that the bank which QBD thinks exported the file matters.

Running this import is a much easier process than importing the records manually. We hope this helps save you some time.