Fidelity Investments and the Arizona Commission for Postsecondary Education will bring their unique, tax-advantaged 529 plan to families saving for college nationwide.

For as little as $50 a month, officials said late last week, the Fidelity Arizona College Savings Plan allows families to save state and federal income tax-free for education at most accredited college and universities nationwide. Fidelity officials estimate that the cost of a college education in 18 years could top $145,000 and reach upwards of $300,000 at a private institution.

Features of the plan include state and federal income tax deferral during the growth period and families will not be taxed when they withdraw the investment earning for a qualified higher education expense. Initial investment for the plan can be as low as $1,000, or $50 a month, and investors can save as much as $275,000 per student. Fidelity also intends to make fees and expense "competitive," officials said, and personalized, age-based strategies can be drawn. A MasterCard with a 2% rewards program is additionally available.

Boston-based Fidelity manages more than $6 billion in 529 plans for more than 200,000 families.

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