NU Online News Service, April 7, 2003, 4:52 p.m. EDT – MetLife Inc., New York, has agreed to help Seligman Advisors Inc., New York, distribute the National College Savings Program.

The National College Savings Program is a 529 college savings program set up by the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority.

Seligman, a unit of J.&W. Seligman & Company Inc., New York, has been distributing the North Carolina 529 program itself. MetLife will now help market the program through broker-dealers throughout the United States.

The broker-dealers will include MetLife Securities Inc. and other MetLife affiliates, the companies say.

The North Carolina program will also add a guaranteed-principal stock fund from MetLife to its menu of investment options.

Section 529 of the Internal Revenue Code gives states the authority to set up 529 college savings programs.

The federal government exempts contributions from federal income taxes, and most beneficiaries who use the money to pay for college can withdraw the plan assets without paying any federal income taxes on the distributions.