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A guide to Foreign Trader

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Summary

How to set up and use Foreign Trader in Sage 50 Accounts, to enable you to trade in different currencies.

Description

With Foreign Trader you can set up customers, suppliers and bank records to use other currencies, meaning you can enter payments and receipts in those currencies without the need for any manual calculations. You can also create customer and supplier documents such as invoices, orders and statements in the relevant currencies.

NOTE: The option is available as standard in Sage 50 Accounts Professional and Client Manager. In other variants of Sage 50 Accounts, Foreign Trader is available as an add-on >

To find out what tax codes to use post Brexit, you can use our handy guide.

Resolution




Set up Foreign Trader

Activate Foreign Trader

If you're using Sage 50 Accounts on subscription, to enable software features, please open Tools > Activation > Upgrade program > OK.

  1. On the menu bar click Tools then click Activation and click Enable Foreign Trader.

    If this option is not showing, find out why >

  2. If not using Sage 50 Account Professional, you may be prompted to enter your Foreign Trader serial number and activation key.
  3. If an Information window appears click OK, then click Next.
  4. Enter your Revaluation N/C, by default 7906. This code is used to post automatic revaluations caused by fluctuations in the exchange rate when processing foreign currency transactions.
  5. Click the Update method drop-down and choose how you want your currency records to update when you enter an exchange rate for a transaction:
    • Always Prompt to save exchange rate changes - When you enter an exchange rate, this option prompts you to save the exchange rate to the currency record.
    • Automatically save any exchange rate changes to currency record - When you enter an exchange rate, this option automatically saves the exchange rate to the currency record, without warning.
    • Never save any exchange rate changes - When you enter an exchange rate, this option doesn't save the exchange rate to the currency record. To set your exchange rates manually, click Settings then click Currencies.
  6. To change this setting, click Settings then click Invoice & Order Defaults and click the Currency Exchange Rates drop-down list and choose which method you want to use.
  7. Click Next then click Finish.

Set up or check your currencies

  1. On the menu bar click Settings then click Currencies.
  2. To change an exchange rate, click Exchange rate and enter the required rate.
  3. To edit the details of a currency, select the currency then click Edit and amend as required then click OK.

For the Euro exchange rate, you can only change the exchange rate, it's not possible to change any other details.

4. Click Close.

 NOTE: The base currency is set when you first create your company in Sage Accounts. You can't change this.

Check or amend the currency on a customer or supplier record

  1. Click Customers or Suppliers then double-click the record you want to check or amend.
  2. Click the Defaults tab then click the Currency drop-down and click the currency you want to use. 

    If there are already transactions on a customer or supplier record, you can't change the currency and you should create a new record and transfer any balances over.

  3. Click Save then click Close.

Check or amend the currency on a bank record

  1. Click Bank accounts and double-click the bank account you want to check or amend.
  2. From the Currency drop-down click the currency you want to use. 

    If there are already transactions on a bank record, you can't change the currency and you should create a new bank record instead.

  3. Click Save then click Close.

Post foreign currency transactions

Once you set up Foreign Trader and create your foreign currency bank account, customer and supplier records, you can start processing your foreign currency transactions.

You post foreign currency invoices, orders and transactions in the same way as your base currency postings. The only differences are:

  • You enter the foreign currency amount instead of the base currency value. For example, if an invoice is 100 Euros, you enter 100.00
  • There's an extra field to show the exchange rate that will be used for the transaction. You can amend this if required

 TIP: For more information about the exchange rate settings, please refer to the earlier section, Set up Foreign Trader.

Automatic revaluation postings

When you post foreign currency transactions, Sage Accounts automatically keeps track of the equivalent base currency values based on the exchange rates used. As currency exchange rates fluctuate, when you allocate transactions together, for example an invoice and a payment, the base currency values of these transactions may differ.

To account for these exchange rate differences, Sage Accounts posts automatic revaluation transactions with the following details:

A/CDateRefN/CDeptDetailsNetT/CVAT
Customer or supplier account referenceReceipt or payment dateREVALExchange rate variance, by default 79060Currency Reval [amount] to [transaction type and number]Revaluation amountT90.00

For more information about revaluation postings, choose your VAT scheme below:




Post foreign currency bank transfers

To process a base currency to foreign currency or foreign currency to base currency bank transfer

  1. Click Bank accounts and select the bank account you want to transfer from.
  2. ClIck Bank transfer and complete the Bank Transfer window as follows:
    FromEnter the bank account you want to transfer from.
    ToEnter the bank account you want to transfer to.
    DateEnter the date of the transfer.
    ReferenceAutomatically displays TRANS. If required, you can amend this.
    Ex RefSage Accounts v22 only 

    Enter an extra reference if required.

    Details or DescriptionAutomatically displays Bank Transfer. If required, you can amend this.
    DepartmentEnter the department.
    Payment AmountEnter the payment value of the transfer. 

    This value is the same currency as the bank account the transfer is from.

    Receipt AmountSage Accounts v22 only 

    Enter the receipt value of the transfer.

     

    This value is the same currency as the bank account the transfer is to.

    Exchange RateEnter the exchange rate for the transfer. You can enter an exchange rate with up to 6 decimal places. 

    The comment indicates what rate to use. For example, if the comment is One pound Sterling is worth 1.5 US Dollar, enter a rate of 1.5 would give you 1.5 dollars for every pound.

  3. If you amend the Exchange Rate box and the currency Update method is set to Always prompt to save exchange rate changes, you can update your currencies list with the rate from this transaction. To update the currencies list with the rate from this transaction click Yes or if you don't want to update the currencies list click No.

    If you amend the Exchange Rate box and the currency Update method is set to Automatically save exchange rate changes, the new exchange rate saves to the currencies list.

     

    If you amend the Exchange Rate box and the currency Update method is set to Never save exchange rate changes, this doesn't affect the currencies list.

  4. Click Save then click Close.

To process a foreign currency to the same foreign currency bank transfer

  1. Click Bank accounts and select the bank account you want to transfer from.
  2. Click Bank transfer and complete the Bank Transfer window as follows:
    FromEnter the bank account you want to transfer from.
    ToEnter the bank account you want to transfer to.
    DateEnter the date of the transfer.
    ReferenceAutomatically displays TRANS. If required, you can amend this.
    Ex RefSage Accounts v22 only 

    Enter an extra reference if required.

    Details or DescriptionAutomatically displays Bank Transfer. If required, you can amend this.
    DepartmentEnter the department.
    Payment AmountEnter the payment value of the transfer. 

    This value is the same currency as the bank account the transfer is from.

    Receipt AmountAutomatically displays the same figure as the payment value. You can't change this.
    Exchange Rate

    Automatically displays as 1.000000. You can't change this. You can enter an exchange rate with up to 6 decimal places.

  3. Click Save then click Close.

To process a foreign currency to a different foreign currency bank transfer

 NOTE: For the revaluation journals to post on the same date as the bank transfer you must change the software date. To do this click Settings then click Change Program Date.

  1. Click Bank accounts and select the bank account you want to transfer from.
  2. Click Bank transfer and complete the Bank Transfer window as follows:
    FromEnter the bank account you want to transfer from.
    ToEnter the bank account you want to transfer to.
    DateEnter the date of the transfer.
    ReferenceAutomatically displays TRANS. If required, you can amend this.
    Ex RefSage Accounts v22 only 

    Enter an extra reference if required.

    Details or DescriptionAutomatically displays Bank Transfer. If required, you can amend this.
    DepartmentEnter the department.
    Payment AmountEnter the payment value of the transfer. 

    This value is the same currency as the bank account the transfer is from.

    Receipt AmountEnter the receipt value of the transfer. 

    This value is the same currency as the bank account the transfer is to.

    Exchange RateThis automatically calculates. It divides the receipt value by the payment value to calculate the exchange rate. 

    The exchange rate is the foreign to foreign rate. If you amend the exchange rate this changes the payment value.

  3. Click Save and click Close.

To automatically reverse a foreign currency bank transfer

  1. Click Nominal codes then click Journal reversal and click OK

    Sage Accounts 2014 (v20) - Click Modules then click Nominal Ledger then click Journal Reversal and click OK.

  2. In the Date box enter the date of the bank transfer then click OK

    If you receive the Warning message 'Please note: one or more foreign bank revaluation journals have been excluded from the reversal list.' Please refer to the section How to manually reverse a foreign bank transfer.

  3. Select the bank transfer journals you want to reverse then click Reverse

    To reverse the journals the balance must be 0.00.

  4. Click Save.

To manually reverse a foreign currency bank transfer

  1. Click Bank accounts then select the bank account you want to transfer from.
  2. Click Bank transfer and complete the Bank Transfer window as follows:
    FromEnter the bank account you want to transfer money from.
    ToEnter the bank account you want to transfer money to.
    DateEnter the date of the transfer.
    ReferenceAutomatically displays TRANS. If required, you can amend this.
    Ex RefSage Accounts v22 only 

    Enter an extra reference if required.

    Details or DescriptionAutomatically displays Bank Transfer. If required, you can amend this.
    DepartmentEnter the department.
    Payment AmountEnter the payment value of the transfer. 

    This value is in the currency of the account the money is leaving.

    Receipt AmountEnter the receipt value of the transfer. 

    This value is in the currency of the account the money is going to.

    Exchange RateEnter the exchange rate for the transfer. You can enter an exchange rate with up to 6 decimal places. 

    The comment after the Exchange Rate box indicates how the rate is used. For example, if you enter an exchange rate of 1.3 and you're transferring from Euros to US Dollars the comment would be One Euro is worth 1.3 US Dollars.

  3. If you amend the Exchange Rate box and the currency Update method is set to Always prompt to save exchange rate changes, you can update your currencies list with the rate from this transaction. To update the currencies list with the rate from this transaction > Yes or if you don't want to update the currencies list > No. 


    If you amend the Exchange Rate box and the currency Update method is set to Automatically save exchange rate changes, the new exchange rate saves to the currencies list.

     

    If you amend the Exchange Rate box and the currency Update method is set to Never save exchange rate changes, this doesn't affect the currencies list.

  4. Click Save then click Close.

To reverse a bank transfer between two foreign currency bank accounts, if the original transfer includes a revaluation

The below example is based on a company with a Sterling base currency.

  1. Click Transactions then locate the bank transfer journals and revaluation journals and write down the transaction values. For example a bank transfer from a Euro bank account (1200) for €1000.00 to a Dollar bank account (1210) for $1500.00 produces the following transactions:
    TypeNominalDetailsDateRefNetTaxT/C
    JC1200Bank Transfer15/04/18TRANS937.500.00T9
    JD1210Bank Transfer15/04/18TRANS937.500.00T9
    JC7906Foreign Bank Transfer Revaluation Journal from (number)17/04/18REVAL168.270.00T9
    JD1200Foreign Bank Transfer Revaluation Journal from (number)17/04/18REVAL168.270.00T9


    The revaluations always post using the program date.

  2. Calculate the value of the transaction in sterling by deducting the revaluation value from the bank transfer value. For example, using the values above 937.50 - 168.27 = 769.23 therefore this is the original sterling value.
  3. Calculate the exchange rate required for each currency.
    • For the bank account which hasn't had a revaluation posted, the exchange rate can be found in Transactions > Edit. For example, using the transactions above the bank transfer transaction for nominal code 1210 hasn't had a revaluation posted. In corrections the exchange rate shows 1.600000, this is the Dollar exchange rate
    • For the bank account which has had the revaluation posted, divide the foreign gross value by the value you calculated in step 2. For example, using the transactions above, the foreign gross value is 1000.00 and the value in step 2 is 769.23, therefore the exchange rate is 1.300001, this is the Euro exchange rate

      The foreign gross value can be found in corrections. Transactions > Edit.

  4. Enter the exchange rates in the currency list. Settings > Currencies > select the required currencies > note down the existing exchange rate then enter the exchange rates calculated in step 3 > Close. For example, using the values from step 3 the Dollar exchange rate would be 1.600000 and the Euro exchange rate would be 1.300001.
  5. Change the program date to the date of the original revaluation. Settings > Change Program Date > Yes to close any open windows > enter the date of the revaluations > OK. For example, using the above transactions the date would be 17/04/18.
  6. Post the opposite bank transfer. Bank accounts > Bank transfer > enter the relevant details.
    From or Account fromThis is the bank account the original bank transfer was posted to.
    To or Account toThis is the bank account the original bank transfer was posted from.
    Payment AmountThis is the foreign gross value and should match the original bank transfer value for the bank account the original bank transfer was posted to.
    Receipt AmountThis is the foreign gross value and should match the original bank transfer value for the bank account the original bank transfer was posted from.
    DateThis is the bank transfer date and should match the original bank transfer date.


     

     EXAMPLE: Using the transactions above:

    From or Account from1210 Dollar Account
    To or Account to1200 Euro Account
    Payment Amount USD $1500.00
    Receipt Amount EUR €1000.00
    Date15/04/18
  7. Click Save then click Close.
  8. Change the program date to the current date. 

    Click Settings then click Change Program Date and enter the current date and click OK.

  9. Change the exchange rates back to the original rates. 

    Click Settings then click Currencies and select the relevant currencies and enter the exchange rates which were entered before you changed them then click Close.

     

Revalue the foreign currency bank accounts

To revalue a foreign currency bank account

The Foreign Bank Revaluation Wizard changes the sterling balance of a foreign bank account.

  1. On the menu bar click Modules then click Wizards and click Foreign Bank Revaluation.
  2. Click the Currency drop-down and click the currency of the bank account you want to revalue.
  3. Select the bank account you want to revalue then click Next.
  4. Click Date and enter the date you want to revalue the bank account.
  5. Click Exchange Rate and enter the rate you want to use to revalue the bank account then click Next.
  6. Check the figures in the Revalued Balance and Revaluation Amount boxes are correct then click Post

    If the figures aren't correct, click Back and amend the Exchange Rate box to the correct rate.

The revaluation journals

If, after running the Foreign Bank Revaluation wizard, the new balance on your foreign currency bank account is higher than it was before you ran the wizard, the following journal is posted:

TypeNominalDateDetailsNetT/CTax
JDForeign currency bank accountDate of revaluationForeign Bank Revaluation JournalRevaluation amountNon-vatable tax code0.00
JCExchange rate variance nominal codeDate of revaluationForeign Bank Revaluation JournalRevaluation amountNon-vatable tax code0.00

  NOTE: If required, to print a list of the revaluation journals, use the Nominal Ledger Day Books report.

If, after running the Foreign Bank Revaluation wizard, the new balance on your foreign currency bank account is lower than it was before you ran the wizard, the following journal is posted:

TypeNominalDateDetailsNetT/CTax
JDExchange rate variance nominal codeDate of revaluationForeign Bank Revaluation JournalRevaluation amountNon-vatable tax code0.00
JCForeign currency bank accountDate of revaluationForeign Bank Revaluation JournalRevaluation amountNon-vatable tax code0.00


The automatic revaluation journals are always posted with a reference of REVAL and flagged so that they aren't included in a bank reconciliation.

How to view or amend the foreign currency bank revaluation

To view the foreign bank revaluations:

  1. Click Bank accounts and select the required foreign currency bank account then click the New/edit drop-down and click Edit.
  2. To show the list of existing revaluations click the Revaluations tab.
  3. To show the Foreign Balance, the Prior Base Balance and the Revalued Base Balance click Show Balances.

To amend the exchange rate used:

  1. Click Bank accounts and select the required foreign currency bank account then click the New/edit drop-down and click Edit.
  2. Click the Revaluations tab then click Show Balances and select the revaluation then click Edit.
  3. Click Rate and amend the exchange rate as required then click OK.

     NOTE: You can't change the date.

  4. Click Save then click Close.

To reverse a revaluation:

  1. Click Bank accounts and select the required foreign currency bank account then click the New/edit drop-down and click Edit.
  2. Click the Revaluations tab then click Show Balances and select the revaluation then click Reverse.
  3. Click Save then click Close.

Changes you can expect after enabling Foreign Trader

Changes to the customer record, supplier record and new wizards

  • If you create a new customer or supplier record, the default currency and credit limit is taken from the customer or supplier defaults. To check or amend these settings, open Settings > Customer Defaults or Supplier Defaults
  • On the Details tab of the customer or supplier record, the Balance box displays the account balance in the base currency. The Activity tab shows the transactions and balance in the account's currency. To avoid confusion, the appropriate currency symbol is used
  • When you enter opening balances via the Opening Balance (OB) option, you must enter the transactions using the appropriate exchange rate


Changes to the bank accounts and new wizard

  • Bank records display the balance in their currency and the company's base currency. This is calculated using the foreign currency values on bank transactions
  • Bank accounts display the base balance from the nominal ledger in the base currency, and the foreign balance in the bank's currency
  • When you enter an opening balance using the Opening Balance (OB) option, you must enter the transactions using the appropriate exchange rate

Credit Charge Wizard

  • You can't use the Credit Charge wizard for customers using a foreign currency. To post a credit charge to a customer's record, you must raise a batch invoice

Bank Recurring Entries

  • You can't set up recurring entries for foreign currency bank accounts. You must post these manually

Bank Reconciliation

  • The Bank Reconciliation window shows the transaction details for the bank account in the relevant currency
  • If you process transactions using the Adjustment option, you can specify the exchange rate

Journals

  • You can't post a journal to a foreign currency bank account
  • If you need to reverse a journal that's posted automatically by Sage Accounts, such as a bank transfer, you must use the reversal option or post a reversing bank transfer

Global Changes Wizard

  • You can't use the Global Changes wizard for customer or supplier records that use foreign currencies. Any changes to these records must be made manually

Contra Entries

  • You can't post contra entries for foreign currency records. Any contra entries for these records must be posted manually

Fixed Asset Disposal Wizard

  • You can't use a foreign currency bank account in the disposal of a fixed asset

Corrections

  • If you amend a foreign currency transaction, you can only amend the following non-critical boxes: Reference, Description, Bank Rec on, Ex Ref and Rate

Sage Intacct

Sage Intacct is designed for companies that have more complex requirements. To learn more about how Sage Intacct can benefit your growing business visit our dedicated web page.

Read more >


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