Q3 2019 529 plan rankings: Three-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.

Three-year performance ranking (click here for one-year performance table, five-year performance table, and ten-year performance table):

RankStatePlanPerformance Score
1West VirginiaSMART529 WV Direct College Savings Plan30.39
2OhioOhio’s 529 Plan, CollegeAdvantage31.03
3DelawareDelaware College Investment Plan31.07
4ArizonaFidelity Arizona College Savings Plan31.09
5New HampshireUNIQUE College Investing Plan31.13
6MassachusettsU.Fund College Investing Plan31.29
7WisconsinEdvest32.09
8CaliforniaScholarShare 52932.45
9AlaskaAlaska 52932.93
9AlaskaT. Rowe Price College Savings Plan32.93
11New YorkNew York's 529 College Savings Program -- Direct Plan32.95
12IndianaCollegeChoice 529 Direct Savings Plan33.68
13NevadaThe Vanguard 529 College Savings Plan33.70
14South CarolinaFuture Scholar 529 College Savings Plan (Direct-sold)36.31
15NebraskaNebraska Education Savings Trust -- Direct College Savings Plan36.53
16PennsylvaniaPennsylvania 529 Investment Plan40.22
17LouisianaSTART Saving Program40.82
18North CarolinaNC 529 Plan40.90
19MissouriMOST - Missouri's 529 Education Plan (Direct-sold)41.16
20GeorgiaPath2College 529 Plan42.47
21MichiganMichigan Education Savings Program (MESP)42.64
22ColoradoDirect Portfolio College Savings Plan43.81
23FloridaFlorida 529 Savings Plan43.84
24IowaCollege Savings Iowa43.90
25NebraskaTD Ameritrade 529 College Savings Plan44.80
26MinnesotaMinnesota College Savings Plan45.44
27KansasLearning Quest 529 Education Savings Program (Direct-sold)45.61
28MarylandMaryland 529 -- Maryland Senator Edward J. Kasemeyer College Investment Plan46.32
29New JerseyNJBEST 529 College Savings Plan46.65
30MaineNextGen 529 -- Client Direct Series47.10
31VirginiaInvest52947.99
32OklahomaOklahoma College Savings Plan49.04
33ConnecticutConnecticut Higher Education Trust (CHET)49.89
34Rhode IslandCollegeBound Saver (Direct-sold)51.63
35Utahmy52951.67
36NevadaSSGA Upromise 529 Plan53.35
37HawaiiHawaii's College Savings Program56.43
38ArkansasGIFT College Investing Plan57.47
39AlabamaCollegeCounts 529 Fund57.58
40IdahoIdaho College Savings Program (IDeal)59.10
41TexasTexas College Savings Plan63.14
42KansasSchwab 529 College Savings Plan64.76
43NevadaUSAA 529 College Savings Plan66.17
44New MexicoThe Education Plan's College Savings Program66.63
45VermontVermont Higher Education Investment Plan67.56
46South DakotaCollegeAccess 529 (Direct-sold)67.98
47West VirginiaSMART529 Select85.28
48MontanaAchieve Montana89.51
-District of ColumbiaDC College Savings PlanN/A
-IllinoisBright Start Direct-Sold College Savings ProgramN/A
-KentuckyKY Saves 529N/A
-MississippiMississippi Affordable College Savings (MACS) ProgramN/A
-North DakotaCollege SAVE (Direct)N/A
-OregonOregon College Savings PlanN/A
-TennesseeTNStars College Savings 529 ProgramN/A
-WashingtonDreamAhead College Investment PlanN/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.