Pershing First Clearing Firm to Offer Brokerage Solution for 529 College Savings Plans

June 6, 2012

New platform provides financial professionals with a streamlined approach to manage clients' 529s, attract more assets under management and draw new clients.

HOLLYWOOD, Fla., — Pershing LLC, a BNY Mellon company, today announced that is has become the first clearing firm to offer 529 college savings plans on its platform. This new offering enables investment professionals to open, fund and manage 529 college savings plan accounts electronically, similar to the way they manage most other investments for their clients. Pershing's solution helps investment professionals overcome the hurdle of managing 529 college savings plans outside clients' investment portfolios; thereby eliminating a paper-intensive and time-consuming process.

"The 529 College Savings plan is currently one of the most popular college savings vehicles for American families and is expected to reach $237 billion in assets by 2015, according to the Financial Research Corporation," said Rob Cirrotti, director of retirement and long term savings at Pershing, "Advisors will no longer need to handle 529 plan accounts outside their investment platform. With Pershing's new solution, investment professionals can now operate more efficiently and manage these investments alongside the other assets and investments of their clients."

Pershing's open architecture platform will eventually include a large selection of the nation's most prominent 529 college savings plan providers. The first 529 plan available on the platform is CollegeAmerica®, sponsored and administered by the Virginia College Savings PlanSM. American Funds® is the plan's program manager, offering 25 investment options. According to the Financial Research Corporation, CollegeAmerica and American Funds currently have 42% of advisor-sold 529 college savings plan assets.

According to Paul Curley, director for college savings research at the Financial Research Corporation, "Pershing's offering has the potential to greatly expand the use and sales of 529 college savings plans in the advisor-sold channel. We've already seen an impressive 14% increase in gross sales for advisor-sold plans in fourth quarter 2011. Making it easier to do 529 business with industry-leading technologies such as Pershing is introducing can't help but generate greater sales and net assets for advisor-sold 529 plans in the future."

Offering 529 College savings plans on Pershing’s platform offers new opportunities for financial organizations and their professionals to provide clients with a 529 college savings strategy; this can lead to additional assets under management for investment professionals and introductions to new clients. For these professionals, it opens the door to a growing yet underserved market, keeps clients from going to another resource for college funding strategies and broadens the portfolio of services advisors and firms are able to offer clients. Firms and investment professionals with clients already holding 529 college savings plans directly with state programs or mutual fund companies will have the opportunity to consolidate those assets under their management.

"The landscape of financial services continues to change," Mr. Cirrotti added, "Investment professionals need new sources of assets under management to grow their practices and profitability. The launch of the 529 plan offer through the brokerage platform is one more way Pershing supports our customers, their investment professionals and the investors’ needs."

About BNY Mellon's Pershing

BNY Mellon’s Pershing and its affiliates provide advisors, broker-dealers, family offices, hedge fund and ’40 Act fund managers, registered investment advisor firms and wealth managers with a broad suite of global financial business solutions. Many of the world’s most sophisticated and successful financial services firms rely on Pershing for clearing and custody, investment and retirement solutions, technology, enterprise data management, trading services, prime brokerage and business consulting.

Pershing helps clients improve profitability and drive growth, create capacity and efficiency, attract and retain talent, and manage risk and regulation. With a network of offices worldwide, Pershing provides business-to-business solutions to clients representing approximately 7 million investor accounts globally. Pershing LLC (member FINRA, NYSE, SIPC) is a BNY Mellon company. Additional information is available on, or follow us on Twitter @Pershing.

About BNY Mellon

BNY Mellon is a global investments company dedicated to helping its clients manage and service their financial assets throughout the investment lifecycle. Whether providing financial services for institutions, corporations or individual investors, BNY Mellon delivers informed investment management and investment services in 35 countries. As of June 30, 2019, BNY Mellon had $35.5 trillion in assets under custody and/or administration, and $1.8 trillion in assets under management. BNY Mellon can act as a single point of contact for clients looking to create, trade, hold, manage, service, distribute or restructure investments. BNY Mellon is the corporate brand of The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation (NYSE: BK). Additional information is available on Follow us on Twitter @BNYMellon or visit our newsroom at for the latest company news.