COVID & College: Investing for the future in an uncertain present - J.P. Morgan Asset Management
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COVID & College: Investing for the future in an uncertain present

Contributor Michael Conrath

COVID-19 has shut down campuses, sidelined athletics and shifted learning from classrooms to computers – all while rattling the financial markets families depend on to grow their college funds. At this point, the status of the fall semester remains unclear. Longer-term outlooks are even cloudier as universities assess the possible impacts of shrinking enrollment and revenue.

Three keys to successful college planning

No matter what the future holds for younger generations, college is likely to be a part of it. More than eight in 10 high school seniors still plan to pursue four-year degrees, though many are now considering less expensive schools closer to home.1 Meanwhile, nearly 90% of current college enrollees expect to continue with online learning if social distancing keeps campuses closed.2

The bottom line: The aftereffects of COVID-19 may change the college experience, but not the value of a diploma or the plan to pay for it. Regardless of how the pandemic plays out, the keys to successful planning and investing remain the same:

  1. Know your “number” when it comes to college costs
  2. Set realistic financial aid expectations
  3. Don’t just save, invest toward college goals

1 Art & Science Group, March-April 2020

2 College Reaction, April 2020

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To learn more about college planning and 529 college savings plans:

• Consult your financial professional
• Visit www.ny529advisor.com
• Call 1-800-774-2108


Before you invest, consider whether your or the beneficiary's home state offers any state tax or other state benefits such as financial aid, scholarship funds, and protection from creditors that are only available for investments in that state's qualified tuition program.

Market Risk. Economies and financial markets throughout the world are becoming increasingly interconnected, which increases the likelihood that events or conditions in one country or region will adversely impact markets or issuers in other countries or regions. The value of Investments may be negatively affected by the occurrence of global events such as war, terrorism, environmental disasters, natural disasters or events, country instability, and infectious disease epidemics or pandemics. For example, the outbreak of COVID-19, a novel coronavirus disease, has negatively affected economies, markets and individual companies throughout the world. The effects of this pandemic to public health and business and market conditions, including exchange trading suspensions and closures may continue to have a significant negative impact on investments.

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