529 college savings plans and financial aid

The ABCs of your EFC

Tom RowleyWith the high cost of college, chances are good that federal financial aid won’t cover all your child’s college expenses, which is why many parents have opened 529 college savings plans to help fund their child’s education.

In fact, one of the biggest questions I receive from parents is, how will a 529 college savings plan account affect need-based student aid?

To answer that question, let’s start with


Annuities: Are you overlooking this retirement income source?

Part of Invesco’s Saving for Life series

Andrew LasterThree-quarters of Americans are worried about having enough money for retirement.1 That’s no surprise, as pensions are rapidly disappearing and Social Security is subject to political tinkering. What’s more surprising, in my view, is that many investors have overlooked annuities as a way to potentially fill the retirement income gap. It’s been estimated that less than 8% of retirees age 70 and older are getting income from a private annuity.2

What is an annuity?


Want financial aid for college? The time to act is now.

What parents need to know about the new FAFSA timeline for student financial aid

Tom Rowley

College is expensive, and getting financial aid that doesn’t have to be paid back is every parent’s dream. To achieve that dream for your child in the 2017-2018 school year, you need to be aware of two significant changes to the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) process. Otherwise, your child could miss an opportunity for federal grants and work-study funds.

The financial aid clock is ticking

The most significant change is that


DOL exempts certain state-run plans from ERISA

State plans for private-sector workers are granted ‘safe harbor’ despite retirement industry concerns

Jon Vogler

On Aug. 25, 2016, the US Department of Labor (DOL) issued final regulations that exempt state-run retirement plans for private-sector employees from the requirements of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). While this will allay state fears that the plans would have to be ERISA-compliant, and thus incur additional costs, the retirement industry has reiterated numerous concerns about this development dating back before the release of the similar proposed rules last November. (For background on this issue, see my Nov. 20, 2015, blog post titled DOL riles retirement industry with ERISA exemption for state-run IRAs.)

Requirements for safe harbor status

To date, eight states —


Designing an investment plan specifically for college savers

How the architects of CollegeBound 529 approached the challenge of keeping up with skyrocketing education costs

Duy NguyenIn 2015, the State of Rhode Island selected Ascensus College Savings as the program manager and Invesco as the investment manager for the state’s 529 college savings plan, which is available to investors nationwide. In this role, we at Invesco created a suite of investment options specifically designed to meet the unique needs of college savers, who face fast-growing college costs and a limited time to save.

Our plan has three tiers:


Payroll deductions: The key to less debt and a lasting retirement?

We may not like seeing those deductions on our paychecks, but they serve a valuable role

Portrait at the 2014 Invesco National Retail Sales Meeting,It was 43 years ago that I got my first “real” job working in a photo development plant on weekends cleaning chemical tanks. My pay was $1.60 per hour. That’s not a misprint; it was the minimum wage at that time. I was very excited to get my first real paycheck. In the past, I had worked mowing lawns and shoveling snow. This was to be a real working man’s paycheck.

It was simple math: 10 hours at $1.60 per hour – I should get $16.00. Imagine my surprise when my check was less, due to federal and state taxes and something called FICA.

“What are all these deductions?” I wondered. “And what is FICA?” It was easy to understand federal and state taxes, but taking money for my retirement? I was 17 years old – ludicrous, I said!

Payroll deductions are a valuable means of funding retirement