Microsoft releases Money 2001

Microsoft announced this week the immediate availability of Money 2001 Deluxe and Money 2001 Standard, its personal finance software. Microsoft Money 2001 features a new, "holistic" approach to financial software, according to the company, offering consumers easier access to meaningful financial data. With Money 2001, users can monitor financial wellness and progress while plotting their future. The company says that financial software is one of the top applications that customers generally purchase on an annual basis, and its latest entry is the strongest yet.

"The release of Money 2001 marks a turning point in how we think about personal finance software," says Robbie Cape, a product unit manager at Microsoft. "For the first time, through our collaboration with American Express Financial Advisors, we have designed a product that asks consumers about their financial priorities, then provides a personalized, prescriptive set of actions that will help them accomplish their goals. Our mission with Money 2001 is to help people achieve total financial health while effortlessly managing day-to-day financial details."

Money 2001 includes a number of new tools, such as a Money Setup Assistant for setting financial priorities, a real time feedback pane from within the account register, and enhancements to Advisor FYI, which provides personalized, prescriptive financial guidance. Microsoft worked with American Express for three years to develop Money 2001, using Amex's experience to improve the product. The product continues its integration with the MoneyCentral Web site.

Microsoft Money 2001 Standard costs approximately $35; the Deluxe version will set you back about $65. A third edition, Money 2001 Deluxe + Business, will be available in December for about $85

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