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2014 one-year top performing direct plans Q3

Posted: 2014-11-17

2014 one-year top performing direct plans Q3 ranks the performance of direct-sold 529 plans. Direct-sold plans are those that consumers can enroll in without using a broker. We have prepared one-year, three-year, five-year and ten-year performance tables.

To prepare this ranking, we compared a subset of portfolios from each 529 savings plan. We selected portfolios based on their mix of stocks, bonds and money market funds, which allows for an apples-to-apples comparison in seven asset-allocation categories. The lower the "percentile," the better the ranking.

This ranking could be a useful tool for you when selecting which direct 529 plan might be right for you.

Here are our 529 performance rankings as of September 30, 2014 for Direct-sold 529 plans.

One-year performance ranking (click here for three-year performance table, five-year performance table, and ten-year performance table ):

Rank State Plan Percentile
1 District of Columbia DC 529 College Savings Program (Direct-sold) 24.69
2 Tennessee TNStars College Savings 529 Program 25.18
3 New York New York's 529 College Savings Program -- Direct Plan 27.39
4 Alaska University of Alaska College Savings Plan 28.34
5 Louisiana START Saving Program 28.35
6 California The ScholarShare College Savings Plan 31.11
7 Florida Florida 529 Savings Plan 32.56
8 Alaska T. Rowe Price College Savings Plan 32.59
9 West Virginia SMART529 WV Direct College Savings Plan 32.79
10 Colorado Direct Portfolio College Savings Plan 32.89
11 Wisconsin Edvest 32.95
12 Iowa College Savings Iowa 36.53
13 Missouri MOST - Missouri's 529 College Savings Plan (Direct-sold) 36.79
14 Michigan Michigan Education Savings Program 37.09
15 Maine NextGen College Investing Plan -- Client Direct Series 37.31
16 Nevada The Vanguard 529 Savings Plan 38.20
17 Georgia Path2College 529 Plan 38.47
18 Hawaii Hawaii's College Savings Program 40.97
19 North Carolina National College Savings Program 41.05
20 New Mexico The Education Plan's College Savings Program 41.34
21 Pennsylvania Pennsylvania 529 Investment Plan 41.79
22 Utah Utah Educational Savings Plan (UESP) 42.40
23 New Jersey NJBEST 529 College Savings Plan 42.63
24 Indiana CollegeChoice 529 Direct Savings Plan 43.57
25 Kansas Learning Quest 529 Education Savings Program (Direct-sold) 43.85
26 Mississippi Mississippi Affordable College Savings (MACS) Program 45.19
27 Oklahoma Oklahoma College Savings Plan 45.38
28 South Carolina Future Scholar 529 College Savings Plan (Direct-sold) 46.80
29 Illinois Bright Start College Savings Program -- Direct-sold Plan 47.47
30 Vermont Vermont Higher Education Investment Plan 47.70
31 Montana Montana Family Education Savings Program -- Investment Plan 47.82
32 Idaho Idaho College Savings Program (IDeal) 47.98
33 Virginia Virginia529 inVEST 48.30
34 Nebraska Nebraska Education Savings Trust - Direct College Savings Plan 48.77
35 Maryland College Savings Plans of Maryland -- College Investment Plan 49.36
36 North Dakota College SAVE 49.44
37 Minnesota Minnesota College Savings Plan 49.87
38 Nevada SSgA Upromise 529 Plan 50.05
39 Arkansas GIFT College Investing Plan 51.13
40 Ohio Ohio CollegeAdvantage 529 Savings Plan 51.22
41 Oregon Oregon College Savings Plan 52.63
42 Nebraska TD Ameritrade 529 College Savings Plan 54.70
43 Kentucky Kentucky Education Savings Plan Trust 56.40
44 Connecticut Connecticut Higher Education Trust (CHET) 56.51
45 Alabama CollegeCounts 529 Fund 57.63
46 South Dakota CollegeAccess 529 (Direct-sold) 62.48
47 Nevada USAA 529 College Savings Plan 63.69
48 Rhode Island CollegeBoundfund (Direct-sold, Alternative RI) 65.55
49 Texas Texas College Savings Plan 66.02
50 Delaware Delaware College Investment Plan 66.44
51 New Hampshire UNIQUE College Investing Plan 66.54
52 Massachusetts U.Fund College Investing Plan 66.92
53 Arizona Fidelity Arizona College Savings Plan 67.37
54 Kansas Schwab 529 College Savings Plan 71.62
55 West Virginia SMART529 Select 78.66

NA = Not Applicable = Program does not have at least one portfolio with sufficiently-long performance in a minimum of four asset allocation categories under our ranking model.

The plan composite rankings are derived using the plans' relevant portfolio performance in seven unique asset allocation categories. The asset-allocation categories used are: 100 percent equity, 80 percent equity, 60 percent equity, 40 percent equity, 20 percent equity, 100 percent fixed and 100 percent short term. The plan composite ranking is determined by the average of its percentile ranking in the seven categories.

The performance data underlying these rankings represent past performance and are not a guarantee of future performance. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance data used. A plan portfolio's investment return and principal value will fluctuate so that an investor's shares or units when redeemed may be worth more or less than their original cost. Investors should carefully consider plan investment goals, risks, charges and expenses by obtaining and reading the plan's official program description before investing. Investors should also consider whether their beneficiary's home state offers any tax or other benefits that are available for investments only in such state's 529 plan.

Brokers, please note: For internal use only and not for use with or to be shown to the investing public.

Disclaimer: Saving For College, LLC shall not be liable for any errors or omissions in this report. Users should rely on official program disclosures.

For broker-sold plan rankings, click here.

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