MOST - Missouri's 529 College Savings Plan (Direct-sold)


MOST - Missouri's 529 College Savings Plan (Direct-sold), managed by Ascensus College Savings, features three-age based options and 15 static portfolios with Vanguard funds. Accounts can be linked to the Upromise rewards service.

5-Cap Rating


Savingforcollege.com's 5-Cap Ratings provides an evaluation and comparison of 529 plans, utilizing a formula that examines dozens of factors grouped into the following categories. (Scale 0 to 5; 5 is highest)

Performance Costs Features Reliability Resident Upgrade
3.43 3.80 3.13 4.30 0.15

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Program type:


How to enroll:

Enroll directly with the program. Enroll Now

Initial year of operation:

1999, but substantially changed in June 2006

State agency(ies):

Missouri Higher Education Savings Program Board

Program manager:

Ascensus College Savings

Program distributor:

Vanguard Marketing Corporation

Manager contract term:

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State residency requirements:


Who can be a participant/owner in the program?

U.S. citizens and resident aliens who have a Social Security number or taxpayer identification number, UGMA/UTMA custodians, and legal entities.

Significant time or age restrictions imposed by the program:



Maximum contributions:

Accepts contributions until all account balances in Missouri's 529 plans for the same beneficiary reach $325,000.

Minimum contributions:

$25, or $15 per pay period via payroll deduction.

Investment Options

Age-based investment options:

The Age-Based option is offered in 3 different risk levels (Aggressive, Moderate, and Conservative) each containing 5 portfolios of underlying mutual funds. Contributions are placed into the portfolio corresponding to the risk level selected and the number of years to expected enrollment, and later reassigned to more conservative portfolios as the beneficiary approaches college age.

Static investment options:

Select among 6 multi-fund portfolios and 9 individual-fund portfolios.

Underlying investments:

Vanguard mutual funds.

Underlying fund allocations:

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Investment performance link:

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Portfolio Fees & Performance Lookup

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Fees & Expenses

Enrollment or application fee:


Account maintenance fee:

$10 annually, waived for account owners or beneficiaries who are Missouri residents, by choosing electronic delivery for all plan documents, or for accounts with greater than $10,000.

Program management fees:

0.21% - 0.30%

Expenses of the underlying investments:

0.02% - 0.35%

Total asset-based expense ratio:

0.29% - 0.61%

Taxes and other Benefits

Program match on contributions:

The MOST Matching Grant Program has been discontinued.

State tax deduction or credit for contributions:

Contributions to Missouri AND non-Missouri 529 plans of up to $8,000 per year by an individual, and up to $16,000 per year by a married couple filing jointly, are deductible in computing Missouri taxable income. Only contributions made by the account owner are deductible, except for spouses filing a joint return. Rollover contributions are not deductible. Contribution deadline is December 31 postmark.

Value of in-state tax benefits:

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State tax recapture provisions:

The principal portion of nonqualified withdrawals from this plan are included in Missouri taxable income to the extent of prior Missouri tax deductions.

State tax treatment of qualified distributions:

Qualified distributions from Missouri and non-Missouri 529 plans are exempt.

State tax treatment of rollovers:

Missouri follows federal tax-free treatment for rollovers.

Does the sponsoring state exclude the value of an account for state financial aid purposes?


Does participation in the program provide beneficiaries with any advantages in qualifying for resident tuition status at state institutions?


Does the program have a formal agreement with a rewards program or outside scholarship program?

Yes, with the Upromise rewards service.

Statutory protection of an account from creditors:

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Distributions & Terminations

To whom are distributions made payable:

Eligible educational institution or account owner, as directed by the account owner.

Account Changes

Policy regarding participant/owner changes:

Accepts requests to transfer account ownership.

Documents, Access & Reporting

Does participant have online password-protected access to account?


Can the complete enrollment process including funding be done online?


Documents and other services accessible or downloadable on the program's public Web site:

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Web site:

visit Enroll Now



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