Exchange Rates in Google Sheets: A Tracking Guide

How to Track Exchange Rates in Google Sheets

Welcome to "Exchange Rates in Google Sheets: A Tracking Guide", your ultimate resource for managing and analyzing currency data using one of the most accessible tools available: Google Sheets.

Whether you're a small business owner handling international transactions, a financial analyst monitoring currency fluctuations, or just a curious individual planning a vacation abroad, understanding how to effectively track exchange rates can save you time, money, and hassle.

This guide will walk you through the basics of setting up your sheets to track exchange rates, provide automation tips, and discuss ways to analyze this data to make informed decisions.

Setting Up Your Spreadsheet

Getting started with Google Sheets to track exchange rates involves a few essential steps to set up your spreadsheet correctly. This process ensures that you have a robust foundation for entering, importing, and organizing your currency data efficiently.

Introduction to Google Sheets

Google Sheets is a powerful, cloud-based tool that allows users to create, edit, and share spreadsheets online. With Google Sheets, you can access your data from any device with an internet connection, collaborate in real-time with other users, and utilize a wide range of built-in formulas and functions that are particularly useful for handling financial data, including exchange rates.

Creating Your Spreadsheet

  • Step 1: Open Google Sheets: Start by opening Google Sheets in your web browser. If you're new to Google Sheets, you can access it by going to the Google Sheets website or via your Google Drive.
  • Step 2: Create a New Spreadsheet: Click on the blank spreadsheet option or choose a template if you prefer to start with a structured format.

Entering Data Manually

  • Setting Up Columns: Label your columns appropriately to record different data points. Typical columns for tracking exchange rates might include Date, Currency Pair (e.g., USD/EUR), Rate, and Source.
  • Input Data: Begin entering the exchange rate data manually. This is useful if you have historical rates that are not readily available online or if you want to add specific notes about each entry.

Setting Up Live Exchange Rates in Google Sheets

To track live exchange rates using GOOGLEFINANCE, follow these steps:

  1. Choose Your Currency Pair: Determine the currency pairs you want to track. For example, if you are interested in the exchange rate between the US Dollar and the Euro, the currency pair would be "USDEUR".
  2. Insert the GOOGLEFINANCE Function: Click on the cell where you want the live exchange rate to appear. Enter the function as follows:

=GOOGLEFINANCE(“CURRENCY:SourceCurrencyTargetCurrency”)

Replacing SourceCurrency and TargetCurrency with the relevant currency codes, like this example:

For users needing to convert currencies across numerous cells, the fill handle is an effective tool.

After entering the GOOGLEFINANCE function for currency conversion in the first cell, simply drag the fill handle down:

By using the GOOGLEFINANCE function, your data can be updated automatically at intervals determined by Google. This means your exchange rates can remain up to date without any additional input from you.

Conversion Formula for Currencies:

For converting currencies, enter

=Amount * GOOGLEFINANCE(“CURRENCY:SourceCurrencyTargetCurrency”) in a cell.

For instance, to convert 100 EUR to MXN, you would use the formula

=100 * GOOGLEFINANCE(“CURRENCY:EURMXN”)

And the result would be the amount in Mexican Pesos:

Expand Data Retrieval for Historical Rates

If you need historical exchange rate data, you can expand the function to specify the time period and the frequency of the data. For example:

=GOOGLEFINANCE("CURRENCY:USDEUR", "price", DATE(2023,1,1), DATE(2023,12,31), "DAILY") will retrieve daily exchange rates for the year 2023.

Organizing Your Data

  • Creating Tabs for Different Currencies: If you track multiple currency pairs, it’s helpful to organize them into separate tabs. Each tab can represent a different pair, helping keep your data sorted and easily accessible.
  • Using Filters and Sort Ranges: To enhance the navigability of your data, use Google Sheets filter and sort options. These tools are invaluable for managing large datasets, allowing you to quickly find the rates for specific dates or arrange the data in ascending or descending order based on the rate.

Data Validation

  • Ensuring Accuracy: It’s crucial to occasionally verify that the data pulled by GOOGLEFINANCE is accurate and reflects the actual market rates. Cross-reference with other reliable financial data sources when necessary.
  • Error Checking: Implement conditional formatting to highlight any unusual fluctuations or errors in your data, ensuring that any discrepancies are caught and investigated promptly.

Tracking Exchange Rates with Wisesheets

Wisesheets is an add-on for Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel that enhances the functionality of spreadsheets by allowing users to pull in financial data, dividend data and more including exchange rates, from various sources. This capability is especially valuable for financial analysts, traders, and businesses that need to keep track of currency fluctuations in real time while monitoring their stocks.

Building your Exchange Rate Tracker with WISEPRICE Function

Wisesheets utilizes the WISEPRICE function to fetch current and historical financial information. For tracking exchange rates, this function can be particularly useful as it allows users to access the latest currency exchange data with ease.

To get the price data currency, you can use =WISEPRICE("currency", "price")

For example: =WISEPRICE("EURUSD", "price") or =WISEPRICE("GBPUSD", "price")

This also works for stock tracking! You can get the currency of the financials by doing

=WISE("ticker", "reported currency", "ly")

And get the price data by using =WISEPRICE("ticker", "currency")

Building a Stock Screener with Exchange Rates

Now that you know how you can get the exchange rate and real-time conversion, it's time to build our stock screener where you can analyze prices in the currency of your convenience. This is particularly useful if you are looking to invest in foreign companies through specialized brokers.

First, get a list of stocks that you want to analyze. In this example, we are going to track the Technology Sector:

Now, fill the columns with the parameters for your Exchange Rate Tracker. You can try the following:

Time to use the formulas! Let's use what we have learned:

  • Use =WISEPRICE("Ticker", "Price") to obtain the live price for the stock.
  • Use =WISEPRICE("Ticker", "Currency") to obtain the currency of the stock.
  • Select the target currency that you want to convert, such as GBP, EUR, AUD, MXN, etc.
  • Then, use =WISEPRICE("currency", "price") to retrieve the real-time conversion
  • Lastly, multiply the price cell with the real-time conversion to obtain the price in your currency.

And that's it! You can now keep track of the exchange rate in your Investment Portfolio in real-time using Wisesheets.

What's the importance of keeping track of Exchange Rates in an Investment Portfolio?

Keeping track of exchange rates is crucial for managing an investment portfolio, especially if it includes international investments. Here are some of the main reasons why exchange rates are important:

  1. Impact on Returns: Exchange rates can significantly affect the actual returns of an investment. For instance, if you invest in foreign stocks or bonds, the returns will be affected by the fluctuations in the exchange rate between your local currency and the currency in which the investments are denominated. A rising home currency relative to the foreign currency can diminish the returns of an overseas investment when converted back to the home currency, and vice versa.
  2. Risk Management: Exchange rate fluctuations can introduce currency risk into an investment portfolio. By monitoring these rates, investors can make informed decisions about hedging strategies to mitigate potential losses caused by adverse currency movements. This might involve using financial instruments such as currency futures, options, or swaps.
  3. Investment Decisions: Understanding and anticipating currency trends can help investors make more strategic investment choices. For example, if an investor expects a foreign currency to strengthen against their home currency, they might increase their investments in that market to capitalize on potential gains from currency appreciation.
  4. Asset Allocation: Exchange rates can influence the valuation of portfolio assets in different regions. Investors need to adjust their asset allocation to balance the portfolio appropriately according to the changing values of international investments caused by exchange rate movements.
  5. Performance Analysis: For fund managers and investors with global portfolios, comparing performance across different markets requires accounting for exchange rate movements. This is essential to assess the true performance of each investment and to make comparative analyses more accurate.
  6. Inflation and Interest Rates: Exchange rates are often influenced by macroeconomic factors such as inflation and interest rates. Monitoring these rates helps investors anticipate potential changes in monetary policy that could affect their international investments.

Therefore, keeping track of exchange rates is not only about monitoring the direct impact on foreign investments but also about understanding the broader economic context that could influence overall portfolio performance.

In Conclusion

Tracking exchange rates in Google Sheets is a powerful skill that can significantly enhance your financial and business operations.

With the step-by-step guidance provided in this guide, you're now equipped to set up your own exchange rate tracker, analyze historical data, and make more informed decisions based on currency trends.

The flexibility and accessibility of Google Sheets make it an invaluable tool for anyone looking to stay on top of exchange rate movements without needing specialized software.

We're eager to hear about your experiences with tracking exchange rates in Google Sheets or any additional tips you might have discovered along the way.

Do you have questions about setting up your tracker or need advice on specific features? Leave a comment below, and let's keep the conversation going!

Hello! I'm a finance enthusiast who fell in love with the world of finance at 15, devouring Warren Buffet's books and streaming Berkshire Hathaway meetings like a true fan.

I started my career in the industry at one of Canada's largest REITs, where I honed my skills analyzing and facilitating over a billion dollars in commercial real estate deals.

My passion led me to the stock market, but I quickly found myself spending more time gathering data than analyzing companies.

That's when my team and I created Wisesheets, a tool designed to automate the stock data gathering process, with the ultimate goal of helping anyone quickly find good investment opportunities.

Today, I juggle improving Wisesheets and tending to my stock portfolio, which I like to think of as a garden of assets and dividends. My journey from a finance-loving teenager to a tech entrepreneur has been a thrilling ride, full of surprises and lessons.

I'm excited for what's next and look forward to sharing my passion for finance and investing with others!

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