The Utah Educational Savings Plan (UESP) announced December 30th that the number of accounts under its management has passed 300,000, as a growing number of families invest in Utah’s official 529 plan to save for their children’s future college costs.
The number of UESP college savings accounts has almost doubled since the financial crisis ended in 2009, when UESP managed 152,400 accounts for owners.
Nationally, the number of accounts in 529 plans increased by about 21.8 percent in that time, rising to 12.3 million accounts from 10.1 million accounts, according to the College Savings Plans Network.
The demand for UESP accounts is driven by a diverse array of investment choices, low fees, tax advantages, and strong management that has gained attention from consumer experts and investment professionals, as well as national and local media.
In October, investment research firm Morningstar Inc. awarded its coveted Gold rating to UESP, praising the plan for its “compelling investment options at some of the lowest prices in the country.” UESP has earned Morningstar’s top accolade each year since 2011 and in 10 of the last 12 years.
“UESP works hard to be a creative and flexible college savings plan that helps account owners in Utah and across the country meet their savings goals,” said Lynne Ward, UESP executive director.
“We encourage families to begin putting aside money for college as soon as they can. Even small sums saved regularly in a UESP account can ease access to higher education,” Ward said.
UESP, Utah’s official nonprofit 529 college savings plan, is highly ranked by Morningstar Inc., Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine, Money magazine, CBS MoneyWatch.com, and consumer expert Clark Howard for its low fees and industry innovations such as its customized allocation investment options.
Accounts are free to open, and UESP requires no minimum deposit or account balance. UESP’s user-friendly website, uesp.org, makes it easy to open, manage, and contribute to an account online.
Read the Program Description for more information and consider all investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses before investing. Call 800.418.2551 for a copy of the Program Description or visit uesp.org.
Investments in UESP are not guaranteed by UESP, the Utah State Board of Regents, the Utah Higher Education Assistance Authority, or any other state or federal agency. However, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) insurance is provided for the FDIC-insured accounts. Please read the Program Description to learn about the FDIC-insured accounts. Your investment could lose value.
Non-Utah taxpayers and residents: You should determine whether the state in which you or your beneficiary pays taxes or lives offers a 529 plan that provides state tax or other benefits not otherwise available to you by investing in UESP. You should consider such state tax treatment and benefits, if any, before investing in UESP.
 A Morningstar Analyst Rating for a 529 College Savings Plan is not a credit or risk rating. Analyst Ratings are subjective in nature and should not be used as the sole basis for investment decisions. Morningstar does not represent its Analyst Ratings to be guarantees. Please visit Morningstar.com for more information about the Analyst Ratings, as well as other Morningstar ratings and fund rankings.