Open Financial Exchange


Open Financial Exchange (OFX) is a unified specification for the electronic exchange of financial data between financial institutions, businesses, and consumers via the Internet. Developed jointly by Intuit, Microsoft, and CheckFree in 1997, it allows for direct connectivity between the financial institution and the software application. It supports various financial activities including banking, investing, and bill payments.


The phonetics for Open Financial Exchange would be pronounced as: “Oh-puhn Fuh-nan-shuhl Ex-change”

Key Takeaways

Sure, here are three key points about Open Financial Exchange in HTML numbered form:“`html

  1. Open Financial Exchange (OFX) is a unified specification for data transmission which enables us to exchange financial data between consumers, businesses, and financial institutions. It has received wide acceptance because of its ability to allow hassle-free financial data management.
  2. OFX establishes a set of standards that ensures interoperability between financial management software and financial institutions. This aims to improve communication and lessen errors between said tools/utilities.
  3. This protocol supports a wide variety of financial activities including consumer and business banking, bill presentment, and investment tracking. Essentially, it’s a versatile tool that covers various aspects of financial data management.

“`Remember to double-check the information regarding the latest updates or changes to the OFX as it may vary from time to time.


The technology term “Open Financial Exchange” (OFX) is important because it’s a standard protocol used for the electronic exchange of financial data between financial institutions, businesses, and consumers. Introduced in 1997 by Intuit, Microsoft, and CheckFree, it is now broadly adopted across the financial services industry to simplify the transmission and accessibility of financial information. By standardizing the exchange process, it enables seamless and more efficient communication, and helps in managing various types of financial transactions such as banking, investing, and bill payments. Therefore, OFX plays a crucial role in improving the efficiency and speed of financial operations, benefiting both consumers and financial institutions.


Open Financial Exchange, abbreviated as OFX, is a unified protocol designed to ease and streamline financial data transportation over the internet. Essentially, OFX enables you to do online banking, bill payment, and financial data downloads directly via the internet from your financial institutions or services. The protocol was originally drafted and supported by leading finance corporations including Intuit, Microsoft, and CheckFree to facilitate interoperability between financial management software and online services. The purpose of Open Financial Exchange is to cut down the need for manual data entry by enabling automatic data transmission between financial software and institutions. The core function of OFC is the transfer of financial information, including banking statements, credit card statements, bills, investments, and more, which can be easily imported into financial management software like Quicken and Microsoft Money. With OFX, consumers can manage their financial data and conduct transactions with greater ease and convenience, making the complicated process of personal finance management more accessible.


1. Personal Financial Management Software: Software such as Quicken and Microsoft Money utilize Open Financial Exchange (OFX) to interact with banking, credit card, and investment company systems to transfer data and information. Users can access and manage all their financial information in one platform due to OFX protocol.2. Online Banking: Many banks provide online banking services that employ the OFX standard. It allows customers to interact with their account, perform transactions, pay bills, and check balances all from their personal computer or mobile device. Citibank, Bank of America and many others offer these services.3. Investment Services: Investment and brokerage firms often utilize Open Financial Exchange to provide clients with real-time access to their portfolios and enable the buying and selling of securities online. This makes it easier for investors to keep track of their assets and make informed decisions. Companies like E*Trade or Charles Schwab use OFX protocols to streamline these processes.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

**Q: What is Open Financial Exchange?**A: Open Financial Exchange (OFX) is a unified specification for the electronic exchange of financial data between financial institutions, businesses, and consumers via the Internet.**Q: Who developed Open Financial Exchange?**A: OFX was jointly developed by Microsoft, Intuit and CheckFree in early 1997.**Q: What is the purpose of Open Financial Exchange?**A: The purpose of OFX is to provide a standard format for financial data exchange, allowing seamless information flow between different financial institutions and software.**Q: What kind of data can be exchanged using OFX?**A: OFX can be used to exchange a wide variety of financial information, such as bank statements, credit card statements, bill payment, funds transfers, and investment portfolio information.**Q: How does OFX ensure data security?**A: OFX uses SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) for encryption to ensure that data exchanged is secure and cannot be intercepted or tampered with.**Q: What format is OFX data in?**A: OFX data is in SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language). However, recently, many institutions also use XML format.**Q: Is there any specific software needed to use OFX?**A: Yes, to use OFX, you need software that is compatible with the standard. This includes many financial management software packages such as Quicken, Microsoft Money etc.**Q: Who can use Open Financial Exchange?**A: OFX can be used by any individual, business or financial institution that wants to exchange financial information digitally in a standardized format.

Related Tech Terms

  • Financial Data Exchange
  • Application Programming Interface (API)
  • Data Aggregation
  • Online Banking
  • Personal Financial Management Software

Sources for More Information


About The Authors

The DevX Technology Glossary is reviewed by technology experts and writers from our community. Terms and definitions continue to go under updates to stay relevant and up-to-date. These experts help us maintain the almost 10,000+ technology terms on DevX. Our reviewers have a strong technical background in software development, engineering, and startup businesses. They are experts with real-world experience working in the tech industry and academia.

See our full expert review panel.

These experts include:


About Our Editorial Process

At DevX, we’re dedicated to tech entrepreneurship. Our team closely follows industry shifts, new products, AI breakthroughs, technology trends, and funding announcements. Articles undergo thorough editing to ensure accuracy and clarity, reflecting DevX’s style and supporting entrepreneurs in the tech sphere.

See our full editorial policy.

More Technology Terms

Technology Glossary

Table of Contents