Q3 2019 529 plan rankings: One-year performance

Savingforcollege.comBy: Savingforcollege.com | 

Savingforcollege.com 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 "performance score" determines 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, 2019 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):

RankStatePlanPerformance Score
1PennsylvaniaPennsylvania 529 Investment Plan20.47
2LouisianaSTART Saving Program20.95
3OhioOhio’s 529 Plan, CollegeAdvantage22.65
4IowaCollege Savings Iowa22.71
5New YorkNew York's 529 College Savings Program -- Direct Plan24.06
6NevadaThe Vanguard 529 College Savings Plan25.20
7OregonOregon College Savings Plan25.26
8MissouriMOST - Missouri's 529 Education Plan (Direct-sold)26.28
9North CarolinaNC 529 Plan26.77
10ColoradoDirect Portfolio College Savings Plan27.32
11MichiganMichigan Education Savings Program (MESP)29.72
12WashingtonDreamAhead College Investment Plan32.81
13MinnesotaMinnesota College Savings Plan33.35
14AlabamaCollegeCounts 529 Fund33.71
15NebraskaNebraska Education Savings Trust -- Direct College Savings Plan35.04
16IllinoisBright Start Direct-Sold College Savings Program35.30
17IndianaCollegeChoice 529 Direct Savings Plan35.41
18VermontVermont Higher Education Investment Plan36.05
19IdahoIdaho College Savings Program (IDeal)36.09
20KansasLearning Quest 529 Education Savings Program (Direct-sold)36.11
21AlaskaAlaska 52936.84
21AlaskaT. Rowe Price College Savings Plan36.84
23District of ColumbiaDC College Savings Plan37.21
24NebraskaTD Ameritrade 529 College Savings Plan39.26
25Rhode IslandCollegeBound Saver (Direct-sold)39.92
26CaliforniaScholarShare 52940.34
27MaineNextGen 529 -- Client Direct Series40.77
28GeorgiaPath2College 529 Plan40.90
29NevadaSSGA Upromise 529 Plan40.93
30HawaiiHawaii's College Savings Program41.37
32North DakotaCollege SAVE (Direct)42.25
34ArkansasGIFT College Investing Plan42.81
35FloridaFlorida 529 Savings Plan43.02
36MississippiMississippi Affordable College Savings (MACS) Program43.44
37South CarolinaFuture Scholar 529 College Savings Plan (Direct-sold)43.88
38DelawareDelaware College Investment Plan46.41
39ArizonaFidelity Arizona College Savings Plan46.48
40MarylandMaryland 529 -- Maryland Senator Edward J. Kasemeyer College Investment Plan46.74
41MassachusettsU.Fund College Investing Plan46.85
42New HampshireUNIQUE College Investing Plan46.94
44New MexicoThe Education Plan's College Savings Program49.57
45West VirginiaSMART529 WV Direct College Savings Plan49.66
46New JerseyNJBEST 529 College Savings Plan50.19
47ConnecticutConnecticut Higher Education Trust (CHET)51.46
48TexasTexas College Savings Plan55.20
49OklahomaOklahoma College Savings Plan55.28
50NevadaUSAA 529 College Savings Plan63.23
51KansasSchwab 529 College Savings Plan64.63
52MontanaAchieve Montana69.96
53West VirginiaSMART529 Select77.82
54South DakotaCollegeAccess 529 (Direct-sold)79.98
-KentuckyKY Saves 529N/A
-TennesseeTNStars College Savings 529 ProgramN/A

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 Savingforcollege.com 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.

For a more in-depth explanation of our methodology, please read our white paper.

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.