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Microsoft updates Money

Microsoft released new versions Tuesday of its Money personal finance software, which has long run a distant second to market leader Intuit's Quicken. Money 2004 includes new investment-tracking tools and a host of free services--including online bill paying, credit reports, and tax preparation services--offered through Microsoft's MSN Internet service and an array of partners.

Money 2004 comes in four versions. The standard edition sells for $30, with a $10 rebate; the deluxe package sells for $60, with a $20 rebate; the premium version costs $80, with a $20 rebate; and the small-business edition sells for $90, with a $20 rebate. A free 60-day trial version of the deluxe product is available for download from Microsoft. Money hasn't posed a significant threat to Quicken, which accounts for more than 85 percent of the market for personal finance software, according to recent surveys. Microsoft tried to buy Intuit in 1994, in large part to claim the Quicken franchise.