Microsoft Office Accounting (MSOA), which previously known as Small Business Account (SBA), is an accounting software from Microsoft that targeted at small businesses, and in direct competition with Intuit QuickBooks. Office Accounting is available in two versions – the free Office Accounting Express and commercial Office Accounting Professional.

Currently, both Office Accounting Express 2009 and Office Accounting Professional 2009, which is the latest version, is available for UK and USA market only. This market limitation directly affect the currency and its symbol that been applied in the application.

Office Accounting works with a base currency as well as transaction currency, which can be added in Professional edition to support buy and sell transactions in foreign currency. The US version of Office Accounting 2009 is using US Dollar (USD) as its default base currency with $ symbol, while UK version default base currency is British Pound Sterling (GBP) with £ currency symbol. However, for users outside of US and UK, such as those in Australia, India, Japan, Ireland, Germany, France, rest of Europe and other countries who need to use another currency and currency symbols such as Euro (€), Japanese (¥), Rupee (Rs) and etc., it’s possible to “fake” a currency by hacking the base currency in Office Account Professional, and replacing the default base currency parameters with new desired currency and symbol. To edit and modify the base currency in Office Accounting Professional (applies to both Office Accounting Pro 2008 and Office Accounting Pro 2009 or newer version), follow these steps:

  1. In Office Accounting Professional, click on Company in menu bar. In the drop-down menu, click Preferences.
  2. Select and tick the check box for Use Foreign Currencies to turn on and enable foreign currency support.

    Enable Foreign Currency in Office Accounting Professional

  3. Click on OK to save the change.
  4. Click on Company menu and select Foreign Currency, and then click on Currency List.
  5. Select the USD (for US edition) or GBP (for UK edition) on the list (it should be the only active currency with tick beside), and click Edit.

    Manage Currency in Office Accounting

  6. Change the Three-letter Currency Code to desired value, such as EUR for Euro and JPY for Japanese Yen.

    Change the Description to reflect the new currency to use, such as Euro or Japanese Yen.

    Change the Symbol to the currency symbol for the new currency, if applicable.

    Change Default Currency in Microsoft Office Accounting

  7. Click on OK to save the change.
  8. Go back to Company in menu bar, and select Preferences.
  9. Disable and turn off foreign currency support by unchecking Use Foreign Currencies option.
  10. Click on OK to save the change.
  11. Microsoft Office Accounting Professional will start showing and displaying new currency and new currency symbol.

Microsoft Office Accounting Express does not support foreign currency, and thus the hack above doesn’t work. However, changing the format of base currency can still be done on Office Accounting Express 2008 or Office Accounting Express 2009 or newer, by using one of the following trick:

Method 1: Download and install trial version of Office Accounting Professional (download Office Accounting Professional 2008 or Office Accounting Professional 2008). Upgrade the MSOA Express edition to MSOA Professional trial edition by entering the new MSOA Pro trial key. Then perform steps above the change the currency in MSOA. After the evaluation period expires, the product will revert to Office Accounting Express.

Method 2: Modify and edit the base currency to reflect the new desired currency directly in SQL Server database. Office Accounting saves its data in SQL Server. To edit currency directly in SQL Server, run SQL Server Studio (need to be separately installed), and connect to MSSMLBIZ database engine.

Click on “New Query” in the toolbar, and then select the company database which to change the currency in the drop down list in the toolbar. Type the following SQL in the New Query window:

update CurrencyTable set IsoCode='XXX', Symbol='Y' where supportingTableId=79

Replace XXX with the actual 3 letters currency code and Y with actual currency symbol to use. Execute the SQL statement to make the change.

In Office Accounting 2009, several currencies have been defined by default in “CurrencyTable” database table, they are:

IsoCode Symbol SupportingTableId
GBP £ 79
EUR 80
USD $ 81
AUD AU$ 82
CAD CA$ 83
SEK SKr 84
DKK DKr 85

If the preferred currency that user intends to use in Office Accounting 2009 is already listed in the database, just use the following SQL statement to change the active base currency for the company:

update CompanyAccountTable set CurrencyId=80

Replace value of 80 (unless Euro is intended) from a valid value listed in Supporting Table ID column.

Do note that changing the base currency to another non-supported currency (other than USD and GBP) have some consequences, where it may cause Payroll, PayPal, OFX bank statement import and BACS to work incorrectly. Besides, the base currency for foreign currency exchange rate (if it’s in use) is always based on USD or GBP, and cannot be changed.