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Hafer Chooses Calvert Funds To Provide "Socially Responsible" College Investment Plan Option

Hafer Chooses Calvert Funds To Provide "Socially Responsible" College Investment Plan Option

Published 03-06-02

Submitted by Calvert

HARRISBURG - State Treasurer Barbara Hafer today announced that she has chosen Calvert Group, Ltd., best known as the nation's largest family of socially responsible mutual funds, to provide additional options in the new, investment-based "Section 529" college savings plan.

"We will be offering two top-ranked Calvert funds in addition to an array of Delaware Investment funds," Hafer said. Delaware was chosen in January to manage the new college savings plan.

"Pennsylvania will be a national leader, offering the nation's best known socially responsible funds," Hafer said. "This will be a great opportunity for families to invest their college savings in companies they can be comfortable supporting. At the same time, they can rely on Calvert's record of highly competitive performance." A Calvert stock fund and a Calvert bond fund will be offered, Hafer said.

Participants in the new investment-based plan will be able to choose among a number of investment options that will reflect different segments of investment markets. The offerings based on Delaware funds will include stock, bond and balanced funds, a stable value fund and two age-based options in which the investment mix will automatically become more conservative as the child approaches college age.

Calvert is a recognized brand leader in socially responsible investing. All of its socially screened investments must meet minimum standards for social issue criteria. Calvert's research team investigates issues such as environment and labor relations, workplace practices, product safety and impact, community relations and human rights.

"We are delighted to see Pennsylvania responding to the strong interest among investors for socially screened investments," said Barbara J. Krumsiek, President and CEO of Calvert. She added, "We believe social options will become popular within college savings plans, similarly to the way they gained popularity within the retirement savings market.

Hafer said she is proud to make socially responsible options available, particularly since the Treasury Department, which manages the current TAP Guaranteed College Savings Plan, follows guidelines that preclude placing TAP funds in companies such as tobacco producers.

The new investment options will be offered in addition to the popular TAP guaranteed plan and will be available on a national basis this spring. Treasury is working aggressively with Delaware Investments toward the launch of the program.

Like the current TAP program, the new investment program will qualify as a Section 529 state-sponsored college savings program under federal law. Such programs are able to offer unique tax benefits not available through any other college-savings vehicle. Most notably, effective January 1, growth in the value of such Section 529 accounts is not subject to federal tax. Growth in the value of a TAP account also is free of Pennsylvania state or local tax, thanks to state tax law.

Pennsylvania residents will be able to join the new program either through brokers and financial advisors, or directly by contacting the program's toll-free number or web site.

Calvert is the largest family of socially screened funds in the country with sixteen portfolios ranging from large, mid, and small cap equity, bond, and money market, and variable annuity portfolios. The firm maintains the Calvert Social Index*, a transparent measurement of the performance of large, U.S.-based socially responsible companies. Calvert also has an extensive lineup of tax-free and taxable fixed income investments.

More information is available by calling the TAP toll-free number at 1-800-440-4000 or visiting the TAP Web site at

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Calvert, a leader in sustainable and responsible investing, headquartered in suburban Washington, D.C., has, since our founding in 1976, set industry standards for asset management excellence - in both the way we select companies for our portfolios and how we serve our clients' interests. Our investment approach emphasizes rigorous fundamental research that goes beyond traditional measures to uncover companies with long-term value. Through proven investment management, attentive customer service, an innovative family of investment products, and strong marketing capabilities, Calvert serves individual and institutional investors nationwide as well as professional financial advisors

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