NY to Launch RFPs for its 529 Program
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Monday, March 17, 2003

NY to Launch RFPs for its 529 Program

New York state plans to issue RFPs possibly at the end of this month, as its five-year 529 program agreement with TIAA-CREF expires July 30th, confirmed John Chartier, a spokesman for the state comptroller's office.

The state's college savings program stands as one of the largest in the nation with assets of some $1.6 billion held in about 302,000 accounts. Those figures also represent growth over year-end 2002, when the program reported some $1.3 billion in assets in 275,000 accounts, according to Chartier.

The spokesman declined to comment on the likely selection criteria for a new program administrator, who will also handle day-to-day investment management services, prior to the formal launch of the RFPs.

Meanwhile, TIAA reportedly has managed the growing New York plan without a share class for advisors, a major distribution channel for such plans, which could provide an opening to fund firms with wider distribution capabilities.

Chartier noted that the incumbent firm, which charges an annual fee of 60 basis points, would also be considered this time around should it submit a bid. He noted that the rate stands as one of the lowest in the market, and reflects a cut made by TIAA-CREF within the last year from 65 basis points.

At present, the state has not tapped an outside search consultant, according to Chartier.

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