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Columbia Management Expands College Savings Plan Investment Lineup

Columbia Management today announced the launch of its new Future Scholar 529 College Savings Plan featuring more investment options, reduced fees and lower investment minimums.

“We’re proud to offer more investment choice while significantly lowering overall expenses for families and financial advisors who are seeking a smart, disciplined and tax-efficient way to save for a child’s college education,” said Kevin Wasp, vice president of product management at Columbia Management.

More investment options:

The advisor-sold and direct plans added mutual funds from some of the most recognized investment managers in the industry, including: Columbia Management, Threadneedle Investments, The Vanguard Group, Dimensional Fund Advisors, MFS Investment Management, American Century Investments, BlackRock Fund Advisor’s iShares, Nuveen Investments, Winslow Capital, Franklin Templeton Investments and J.P. Morgan Asset Management.

Reduced expenses:

Overall plan expenses have dropped by 41 percent, placing the Future Scholar 529 College Savings Plan among the lowest cost direct-sold plans in the country, according to the most recent reporting from the Financial Research Corporation.

Lower investment minimums:

The direct-sold plan does not require an investment minimum. The advisor-sold plan minimum is now $100 to open account, and $50 for subsequent contributions.

The Future Scholar 529 College Savings Plan offers three investment options:

  • Age-based – corresponds with the child’s age and the parents’ risk tolerance over time
  • Target-allocation – seven target allocation portfolios ranging from conservative to aggressive
  • Single-fund – variety of mutual funds ranging from domestic and international equity funds to more-conservative fixed income funds

The principal in these investment options is not guaranteed at any time.

The Future Scholar 529 College Savings Program has $1.5 billion in assets and 93,000 accounts as of June 30, 2012. Columbia Management has been the investment manager and distributor of South Carolina’s advisor-sold and direct-sold college saving plans since 2001. For more information, please visit futurescholar.com.

About Columbia Management:

Columbia Management is the eighth largest manager of long-term mutual fund assets with $331 billion under management as of June 30, 2012. Columbia Management is a subsidiary of Ameriprise Financial, Inc. (NYSE: AMP). For more information please visit columbiamangement.com.

Please consider the investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses carefully before investing. Contact your financial advisor or visit columbiamanagement.com for a Program Description, which contains this and other important information about the Future Scholar 529 College Savings Plan. Read it carefully before investing. You should also consider, before investing, whether the investor’s or designated beneficiary’s home state offers any state tax or other benefits that are only available for investments in such state’s qualified tuition program.

Participation in the Direct Plan is limited to a select group of investors, as described in the Program Description. You may also participate in the Advisor Plan, which is sold exclusively through financial advisors. The Advisor Plan offers additional investment choices, but the fees and expenses are higher. Please refer to the Program Description for more information.

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