Kansas 529 Plans Have Lower Fees and New Investment Options

The Kansas State Treasurer’s Office has announced lower fees for Learning Quest and new lower cost investment options for the Schwab 529 College Savings Plan.

Kansas State Treasurer Ron Estes

Kansas State Treasurer Ron Estes

Effective July 1, 2013 fees for the Learning Quest Age-Based Index Portfolios were lowered to 0.45 percent from 0.50 percent. The change was made in response to an annual review meant to keep fees competitive with other industry plans.

“One of the strengths of the Kansas 529 Plans is the variety of investment options available. We have and will continue to look for ways to lower costs for account holders,” said Kansas State Treasurer Ron Estes. “I appreciate the fact that our program manager, American Century Investments, continues to work with us to accomplish these goals.”

The lower fees on these options are meaningful to Kansas investors since fees have an impact on net investment returns. Those who are interested in opening an account can now get started for only $25. Three Kansas higher education savings plans are available to choose from: Learning Quest, Learning Quest Advisor, and the Schwab 529 Plan.

Additionally, Charles Schwab & Co. investors now have six new investment options within the Schwab 529 Plan. The new options are fully diversified portfolios, invested in index mutual funds, with allocations ranging from aggressive to short-term. Because they are indexed-based with 0.55 percent fees, rates are significantly lower than the plan’s existing portfolios. Investors can choose to use new indexed portfolios as part of an age-based track or as stand-alone portfolios.

“We want to thank American Century Investments and Charles Schwab & Co. for lowering the fees for our investors. I am also pleased that Schwab Plan investors will have more investment options to choose from when it comes to saving for their student’s higher education expenses,” said Treasurer Estes. “I want to encourage Kansas families to start saving now to meet the challenge of paying for tomorrow’s college or vocational school.”

For more information on Learning Quest and Learning Quest Advisor, visit learningquest.com. For more information on the Schwab 529 plan, visit Schwab.com/529.

The Learning Quest 529 Education Savings Program was created to help families invest for their child’s continued education after high school, whether at a traditional four-year college, community college, or technical/vocational school. Kansas taxpayers can receive a Kansas tax deduction up to $3,000 per child ($6,000 if married, filing jointly) on contributions to Learning Quest, Learning Quest Advisor, the Schwab 529, or any other 529 plan sponsored by another state.

Ron Estes is the 39th State Treasurer for the state of Kansas and is the first state-wide elected official from the City of Wichita in 20 years. He was originally elected Sedgwick County Treasurer in 2004 and was re-elected to that position in 2008. Ron has also served as the Treasurer for the Kansas County Treasurers’ Association. Ron was born in Topeka and is a fifth- generation Kansan. His family continues to run a farm in Osage County. Ron and his wife, Susan, have three children.