Lightyear is a new investing app that offers users access to multi-currency accounts, thus removing hefty foreign exchange fees when purchasing stock from global markets up to the value of £3,000 per month.
This, coupled with zero account and trading fees, makes this a cost-effective proposition for investors attracted to popular US shares such as Amazon and Tesla.
Get $10 FREE
Get $10 FREE* when you signup and fund your account with either 1USD, 1EUR or 1GBP. You will be credited with $10 to spend on stocks of your choice!
*Terms and Conditions apply.
Lightyear Rating Summary
- Multi-currency account to eliminate pricey currency conversion fees
- Fractional shares
- Zero account or trading fees
- Limited investment opportunities
- No ISA
Who are Lightyear?
The team at Lightyear claim that their collective building of TransferWise, Revolut and Pipedrive has given them ‘a front row seat to exciting new financial technologies’ allowing them to identify the areas where investing remains broken and remove some of the barriers associated with sending money abroad.
By applying Wise’s core principles, the Wise chairman claims that they have provided free access to global markets, setting themselves apart from rival DIY investment platforms with zero account and trading fees or foreign exchange fees.
Who owns Lightyear?
Lightyear trading app was founded by former Wise staff Martin Sokk and Mikhel Aamer with such seasoned investors as Wise co-founder Taavet Hinrikus and early Monzo backer, Eileen Burbidge positioned as early angel investors.
This is the first time Taavet Hinrikus has purchased shares in public stock, despite being a prominent angel investor and making plenty of private investments.
Lightyear product range overview
At Lightyear, traders can access over 1,000 global stocks, including fractional shares, from multicurrency accounts. What you wouldn’t find at Lightyear is access to funds, CFDs, futures, options, cryptocurrency or forex and there is no ISA option to protect your gains from tax.
Lightyear provides access to over 1,000 global stocks, mostly in the US markets (NASDAQ and NYSE) in addition to stocks available through ADRs (American Depositary Receipts). Whilst this will provide retail investing access to some big companies at a rate that won’t include prohibitively expensive FX fees, it is still a fairly limited offering with no access to funds, high-risk CFD trading, futures, options, cryptocurrency or forex.
Where Lightyear do stand out is by offering users multicurrency accounts, which enables investors to deposit, hold, and invest in multiple currencies up to the value of £3,000 per month, effectively eliminating foreign exchange charges. After this sum, users will be charged 0.35% in FX fees.
In addition to this, Lightyear are working towards making valuable companies more accessible to retail investors by offering fractional shares. These two features work to set Lightyear apart from rival trading apps such as Freetrade and eToro.
Whilst Lightyear offer users multi-currency accounts in USD, EUR and GBP, you won’t find an ISA on the DIY share investing platform, although Lightyear definitely isn’t ruling this out as part of their future plans. However, Lightyear’s claim to shake up Europe’s investment market might need more work with most of the investment opportunities being available in the US at present.
Lightyear customer service review
Customer Service is only available via email at Lightyear which is fairly far behind the competition. However, that being said, response times seem fairly quick and on occasion, they will even phone you back for a chat.
Lightyear opening an account
Opening a standard investment account at Lightyear is fully digital, quick and easy as you would expect from an investment platform to rival the likes of Interactive Investor and eToro. Within moments you will have unlimited access to investments without hefty charges adding to already pricey stocks.
When you start investing at Lightyear you can be assured that they have taken all the appropriate safety measures to keep your account secure using best in class technology. Investments under SIPC are protected up to $500,000 and Lightyear is an appointed representative of RiskSave which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
There is little doubt that this is where Lightyear’s strength lies and if cost is your main concern then you won’t find much better. Lighthouse have maintained that their standard account will remain free of any management fees, or account fees despite any tiered account structure that may be introduced in the future.
With stocks available in so many different currencies, Lighthouse have focused their efforts on providing an excellent solution for FX, a first for a platform like this and a welcome incentive for existing investors looking to invest their money globally on stocks.
Who is Lightyear suitable for?
Lightyear is best suited for ordinary investors and beginners looking for an uncomplicated way of investing globally whilst avoiding the sneaky fees associated with investing.
That being said, the educational section at Lightyear is fairly sparse and investors would be required to conduct their own research before conducting a trade. However, for investors who are part of the wave of people increasingly attracted to big-name US shares like Tesla and Apple, Lightyear provide a cost-effective way to purchase fractional shares.
This section contains useful information to make your experience at Lightyear as seamless as possible.
How do I contact Lightyear?
Lightyear can be contacted via email on email@example.com.
How do I withdraw money from my Lightyear savings account?
You can withdraw your money from within the app and all bank transfers out are free of charge.
How do I close my account at Lightyear?
You can close your account at Lightyear by emailing the customer support team.
Lightyear App FAQs
Is Lightyear any good?
Lightyear are certainly showing plenty of promise with the removal of all transaction costs allowing for fractional trading and providing a means for investors to purchase leading stocks with big-ticket share prices. Users can expect not to pay account or trading fees on the investment app and certainly reviews so far are excellent.
However, this does still feel like an early-stage business and Lightyear still have a way to go before they realise their mission to shake up Europe’s market.
What will I get charged for currency conversions over £3,000 per month?
Currency conversion means extra costs for investors so Lightyear provide customers access to £3,000 per month of free conversions using the same principles utilised at Wise. Beyond this, you will be charged 0.35% for each overseas transaction.