Franklin Templeton Investments
has opened the doors on a new 529 college savings program sponsored by the State of New Jersey
. The mandate to run the plan was one of two that the San Mateo-based fund firm won last September. It also is an asset manager on the Merrill Lynch Mercury Funds plan sponsored by the state of Arkansas.
Franklin is distributing the plan nationally through advisors and is offering A, B and shares as part of the program. Shareholders can choose to invest in one of four risk-adjusted allocation, an age-based allocation or an individual portfolio created from 12 investment options.
By choosing New Jersey Franklin turned down an opportunity to run a program sponsored by Oregon
. The firm won both the New Jersey and Oregon mandates in the same month, but needed only one platform for a nationally distributed product, according to an industry source.
Oregon already sponsors four programs and has stated it has no intention to reopen the search process that ended when the mandate was offered to Franklin.
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