Legg Mason's Scholars Choice® College Savings Program Maintains Impressive Performance While Reaching $3 Billion Mark
BALTIMORE, March 7, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Legg Mason, Inc. (NYSE: LM) announced today that its Scholars Choice College Savings Program has maintained its long-standing presence among the top 4-performing advisor-sold 529 plans for a quarterly rolling one-year period. This represents the 13th consecutive quarter that Scholars Choice has earned such kudos from Savingforcollege.com, based on investment performance, including the impact of fees. Scholars Choice also mastered the three-year category: It was named the #1 advisor-sold 529 plan for the three-year period, both including and excluding the impact of fees.
"Investment excellence is just one of the factors that has helped us reach $3 billion in assets under management," noted John Kenney, Head of Legg Mason Global Asset Allocation. "Financial advisors feel confident recommending a 529 savings plan with demonstrated results and low fees1."
"Top-tier 529s stand to benefit now that we have greater clarity around the tax consequences of education incentives," remarked Joe Hurley, founder of Savingforcollege.com. "We should see much larger contributions going into 529 plans as a direct result of the $5 million ($10 million for a couple) estate exemption."
Savingforcollege.com -- an independent informational website owned by Saving for College, LLC -- is generally regarded by industry professionals as one of the leading experts on college savings. Scholars Choice is managed by Legg Mason's independent investment firm, Legg Mason Global Asset Allocation, and distributed by Legg Mason Investor Services for the State of Colorado.
All Savingforcollege.com rankings are as of December 31, 2012 and are based on the universe of 30 advisor-sold plans for Class A share performance (including maximum sales charges). The portfolios within the plans are compared and ranked based on published investment returns. The plan's composite ranking is determined by the average of its percentile ranking. The program ranked 3, 1, 10 and 7 for the quarterly rolling 1-, 3-, 5- and 10-year periods, respectively. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. The performance and rankings discussed are inherently limited and are not indicative of longer-term performance. Current performance may be lower or higher than performance results used for these rankings, resulting in different rankings that may be lower than those shown. Market volatility, interest-rate changes and economic events, among other factors, can affect an investment's short-term returns.
Savingforcollege.com derives the rankings using each plan's relevant portfolio performance in seven unique asset allocation categories: 100% Equity, 80% Equity, 60% Equity, 40% Equity, 20% Equity, 100% Fixed and 100% Short Term. The plan's composite ranking is determined by the average of its percentile ranking in these categories. Within each category, portfolios are compared and ranked based on published investment returns. Separate rankings are produced for one-, three- and five-year periods. In addition, two versions of rankings for each performance period are produced: one based on performance without sales charges and the other based on performance with maximum sales charges. Please visit Savingforcollege.com for more information about the ranking.
Additional unit classes may exist for each plan ranked. Please refer to each plan's program disclosure statement for more information regarding its performance, fees and expenses. For Scholars Choice's program disclosure statement, please visit scholars-choice.com.
About Legg Mason
- A leading global investment company with $654 billion in assets invested worldwide, focused on long-term, actively managed strategies2
- A diverse family of specialized investment managers, each with its own independent approach to research and analysis
- Over a century of experience in identifying opportunities and delivering astute investment solutions to clients in equities, fixed income and alternatives
About Scholars Choice
The Scholars Choice College Savings Program is the advisor-sold College Savings Program for the State of Colorado and is also used by investors and financial advisors throughout the U.S. It is one of the largest advisor-sold 529 college savings plans3, with assets of $3 billion as of January 31, 2012. Scholars Choice is managed by Legg Mason Global Asset Allocation, LLC and primarily distributed by Legg Mason Investor Services, LLC. It is one of the lowest-cost advisor-sold 529 college savings plans2.
Scholars Choice offers seven Age-Based Portfolios, five Years-to-Enrollment Portfolios and six Static Portfolios. Investment options encompass a wide range of carefully constructed portfolios consisting of funds managed by Legg Mason affiliates including Batterymarch Financial Management, Brandywine Global Investment Management, ClearBridge Investments, Royce & Associates and Western Asset Management; and one unaffiliated fund managed by Thornburg Investment Management.
Rankings are based on short- and long-term performance (i.e., rolling one-, three-, five-, and ten-year periods). The short-term performance and rankings discussed are inherently limited and not indicative of longer-term performance. This information should not be the sole basis for any investment decision. Market volatility, interest-rate changes and economic events, among other factors, can affect an investment's short-term returns.
An investor should consider the Program's investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses before investing. The Program Disclosure Statement at scholars-choice.com, which contains more information, should be read carefully before investing. If an investor and/or an investor's beneficiary are not Colorado taxpayers, they should consider before investing whether their home states offer 529 plans that provide state tax and other benefits only available to state taxpayers investing in such plans.
Investments in the Scholars Choice College Savings Program are not insured by the FDIC or any other government agency and are not deposits or other obligations of any depository institution. Investments are not guaranteed by the State of Colorado, CollegeInvest, Legg Mason Global Asset Allocation, LLC, Legg Mason Investor Services, LLC, or Legg Mason, Inc. or its affiliates and are subject to investment risks, including loss of principal amount invested.
Legg Mason, Inc., its affiliates, and its employees are not in the business of providing tax or legal advice to taxpayers. These materials and any tax-related statements are not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used or relied upon, by any such taxpayer for the purpose of avoiding tax penalties or complying with any applicable tax laws or regulations. Tax-related statements, if any, may have been written in connection with the "promotion or marketing" of the transaction(s) or matter(s) addressed by these materials, to the extent allowed by applicable law. Any such taxpayer should seek advice based on the taxpayer's particular circumstances from an independent tax advisor.
Scholars Choice is a registered service mark of CollegeInvest. CollegeInvest and the CollegeInvest logo are registered trademarks. Administered and issued by CollegeInvest, State of Colorado. Legg Mason Global Asset Allocation, LLC is the Investment Manager and Legg Mason Investor Services, LLC is the primary distributor of interests in the Program; together they serve as Manager of the Program. Legg Mason Global Asset Allocation, LLC, Batterymarch Financial Management, Inc., Brandywine Global Investment Management, LLC, ClearBridge Investments, LLC, Royce & Associates, LLC, Western Asset Management Company, and Legg Mason Investor Services, LLC are Legg Mason, Inc. affiliates. Thornburg Investment Management, Inc. is not affiliated with Legg Mason, Inc.
1 Source: Financial Research Corporation, "529 College Savings Quarterly Fee Analysis, Fourth Quarter 2012."
2 As of January 31, 2013.
3 Source: Financial Research Corporation, "4Q12 College Savings Quarterly Update."
©2013 Legg Mason Investor Services, LLC. Member FINRA, SIPC.
Legg Mason Investor Services, LLC is a subsidiary of Legg Mason, Inc.
SCHX013129 407444 3/13 FN1310744
SOURCE Legg Mason, Inc.