Hello, fellow investor! We will review the IMPACT app, a product created and directly linked to Interactive Brokers, an online broker with +45 years of experience in the brokerage industry.
We recommend the IMPACT app if you want to take a sustainable investing approach to your portfolio by using environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors with low commissions.
IBKR IMPACT is a platform that helps you invest in companies that share your values. Are you interested in Gender Equality and Green Air? The app will help you identify companies that share those same values to get a portfolio that matches your values and avoids the business practices you’d like to avoid.
This review has used screenshots from the demo account for the writer’s privacy (our writers have real accounts within the investment platforms they review). Your experience with real money will be exactly the same as in a demo account.
Want to know more about the IBKR IMPACT app? Here’s what we’ll cover:
The IMPACT app was designed to allow you to invest in companies that are aligned with the values you care most about. IMPACT separates each value into 13 categories which cover most ESG issues:
- Ocean Life;
- Land Health;
- Consumer Safety;
- Sustainable Product Lifecycle;
- Clean Air;
- Ethical Leadership;
- Gender Equality;
- Mindful Business Models;
- LGBTQ Inclusion;
- Pure Water;
- Company Transparency;
- Racial Equality;
- Fair Labor and Thriving Communities.
It also helps you to eliminate from your portfolio companies that practice their business in a harmful way, either by using animal testing, high water usage or even hazardous waste
After filtering all those sustainable requirements, you should be able to build your sustainable portfolio!
IMPACT app Highlights
|🗺️ Supported Countries||Worldwide (exceptions apply)|
|🌱Impact Values Alignment||✔|
|😤 Flag objectionable practices||✔|
|🌴Build a sustainable portfolio||✔|
|💰 Stocks and ETFs fees||Free of charge (for US customers); Up to USD 0.0035 per share – min. USD 0.35 (for non-US customers)|
|💰 Currency conversion fee||0.002% (0.20 basis points)|
|💰 Inactivity fee||$0|
|💰 Withdrawal fee||$0|
|💵 Minimum Deposit||$/€/£0|
|📍 Products offered||Stocks, ETFs, Mutual Funds, Options, Cryptocurrencies* and Carbon Offsets|
|🎮 Demo Account||Yes|
|📜 Regulatory entities||FINRA, SIPC, SEC, CFTC, IIROC, FCA, CBI, AFSL, SFC, SEBI, MAS, MNB|
*Only available to US customers
Overall, the IMPACT app presents a similar layout and functionalities to other Interactive Brokers applications like the IBKR GlobalTrader App. The distinction comes down to having a focus on ESG factors to generate analysis on your portfolio.
2. Pros and Cons
- Sustainable investing in an easy way
- Portfolio grading (IMPACT score)
- Wide range of ESG products.
- Low commissions (US customers have free trades)
- No account minimum
- Simulated trading (Demo account)
- Backed by Interactive Brokers
- Non-US customers have no crypto access and higher fees
- You cannot trade US Treasury securities
3. Investment Platform
It is intuitive to navigate through the IMPACT app, mainly if you are already an Interactive Brokers user, since most features available in IBKR mobile and IBKR GlobalTrader are very similar.
As soon as you log in, you will be redirected to the last page where you left the app. If it is your first time, the first page that appears will be “Home,” where you see at a glance your portfolio value, return, and Impact Lens:
From here, you are free to explore all the four tabs that appear at the bottom of your screen. If you go to “Portfolio,” you will find two sub-tabs: “Performance” and “Impact Lens.” The first gives you the amount in each position, including the percentage change since you own each asset. Second, you will show details in the Impact Score of each position.
As in any traditional broker, you also find a “Watchlist” where you can select companies that you are keeping a close eye on:
Apart from these features, you have the regular Profile page (top left corner icon) where you can see your “Account details,” “Transaction History,” contact support, “settings,” and log out.
4. Products & Markets
The IMPACT app website highlights the following products: Stocks, ETFs, Mutual Funds, Options, Cryptocurrencies, and Carbon Offsets. Please remember that cryptocurrencies are only available to US residents (through Paxos Trust Company).
|Cryptocurrencies||✔ (only for US customers)|
We started by exploring the Stocks menu and, as you can see, you can quickly filter by the category you came looking for (“Top movers,” “Top IMPACT”, “Top ESG,” etc.). Additionally, by scrolling down, you can also filter by “market cap,” “region,” or “industry”:
The ETF offering comes pre-selected through different themes where you can quickly filter for your preferences. Here, the focus is not on sustainable investment but on broader thematics, such as Growth, Value, Equity Income, and other types of ETF categories:
For eligible stocks and ETFs, you are allowed to use fractional shares. You can invest with as little as $1, regardless of the price of your stock, and achieve a more diversified portfolio.
Carbon Offsets are a particular type of investment. Basically, it gives you the chance to offset your footprint by buying carbon credits. From a list of carbon-generating activities, you can select what you want to offset (your electricity usage, natural gas usage, etc.):
Finally, it also gives you a swap button which is an efficient way to close a position on an asset that does not align with your responsible investing values and open one for an asset that does align. You can use the swap button on any position. In the following example, we swapped Shell shares (oil company) to Greenvolt shares (renewable energy):
As it happens in Cryptos, in terms of fees, there is also a distinction to be made between US and non-US residents.
US customers have access to both the IBKR lite and IBKR Pro accounts, whereas non-US users only get access to the IBKR Pro. This means that US customers, through IBKR Lite, will enjoy $0 commissions on US stocks and ETFs. Apart from that, fees should be roughly the same:
Stocks and ETFs
Up to USD 0.0035 per share (min. USD 0.35)
Commission-free in some. Others: 3% or $14.95 per trade (whichever is lower)
Commission-free in some. Others: From EUR 1.25 (max. EUR 29 per order)
USD 0.65 per US option contract (min. USD 1)
Up to USD 0.65 per US option contract (min. USD 1)
0.12% to 0.18% of trade value (min. USD 1.75 but no more than 1% of trade value)
From 1.00% of offset value
From 1.00% of offset value
Free once a month, then USD 10.00
Free once a month, then EUR 8.00
*Only available to US customers
The IBKR IMPACT app is under the umbrella of Interactive Brokers meaning that you get the exact same protections as a “normal” IBKR customer.
Interactive Brokers is regulated by several top-tier financial authorities, like the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). By itself, this does not mean that the broker will not go bankrupt, but it is the first vital layer to consider.
As a result, Interactive Brokers must be part of the investor protection scheme demanded by each entity. The company has several subsidiaries, and each one has its own rules. To name a few:
- Interactive Brokers LLC: As a US resident, you will be protected up to $500,000, with a limit of $250,000 in cash, by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC);
- Interactive Brokers UK Limited: As a UK resident, you will be under this legal entity which gives you a protection amount (cash + assets) up to £85,000.
- Interactive Brokers Ireland Limited: As a Northern and Western Europe resident, you are under the Central Bank of Ireland regulation meaning that you are protected up to €20,000 for 90% of the amount you have lost (cash + assets) by the ICCL.
- Interactive Brokers Central Europe: People residing in Central/Eastern European countries, Cyprus, Malta, and Greece. The Central Bank of Hungary (MNB) is the legal entity in charge of protecting your investment up to €100,000.
You can get more details on our Interactive Brokers review.
7. Account Opening
If you already have an account with Interactive Brokers, you do not need to open an account within the IMPACT app. You can directly log in as you would do with any other Interactive Brokers application.
In case you do not have an account with IBKR, you will be redirected to sign-up with them. You start your registration process here.
8. Supported Countries
The IMPACT app supports every country where Interactive Brokers operates. So, every person with an Interactive Brokers account should be available to log in to the IMPACT app as it would do to open any of the traditional Interactive Brokers investment platforms: Trader Workstation (TWS), Client Portal, Mobile app, or IBKR GlobalTrader.