Numismatic Guaranty Company

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Numismatic Guaranty Company
Founded1987, Parsippany, New Jersey
HeadquartersSarasota, Florida
Area served
ServicesCoin certification
ParentCertified Collectibles Group, owned by Blackstone Inc

Numismatic Guaranty Company (NGC) is an international third-party coin grading and certification service based in Sarasota, Florida. It has certified more than 50 million coins. NGC certification consists of authentication, grading, attribution, and encapsulation in clear plastic holders. NGC is a subsidiary of Certified Collectibles Group (CCG), which owns six collectible certification services and is in turn owned by Blackstone, a multibillion dollar New York City hedge fund.[1]


NGC was founded in 1987 in Parsippany, N.J. as one of the first independent third-party coin grading companies. In 1995, NGC was named the official grading service of the ANA, though this is purely for marketing purposes as the ANA does not encapsulate coins in its collection,[2] and those that are encapsulated are a mix of donated coins by different services including rivals such as PCGS.[3] NGC commenced operations at its new location in Sarasota, Florida in 2002. That same year, NGC was named the official grading service of the PNG.[4] Similar to the ANA affiliation, this can be misleading as PNG dealers do not exclusively sell or endorse coins graded by NGC.[5] In 2006, NGC relocated to a 60,000-square-foot secure building that also houses its CCG-owned sister companies, including Numismatic Conservation Services (NCS), Paper Money Guaranty (PMG), Certified Guaranty Company (CGC), and Classic Collectible Services (CCS). In 2008, ancient coin certification began (NGC Ancients). NGC has other locations in Hong Kong, China; Shanghai, China; Munich, Germany; and London, United Kingdom.[6]

NGC certification[edit]

2015 American Silver Eagle (Reverse side; Proof "30th ANNIVERSARY" on edge and made of .999 fine silver), in a NGC slab.

NGC certifies most US, world, and ancient coins, tokens, and medals. The certification process consists of authentication, grading, attribution, and encapsulation in plastic holders (aka slabs). Certification fees are tiered according to value, turnaround times, and extra services. NGC has certified over 50 million coins.[7][8] NGC certification offers significant protection against counterfeiting, misattribution, overgrading, and damage, but does not necessarily determine exact value. Even within the same grade, coins can have widely differing values. In the May 26, 2003 edition of Coin World, the hobby newspaper had announced they had contracted investigators to conduct a year-long, comparative study of PCGS, ACCGS, and NGC, along with several other grading services, each known as Third Party Grader (TPG). In their investigation, Coin World sent the same coins to each grading service over the course of a year, each coin being graded by all Third Party Graders it was sent to. They found that "In no case did the grading services agree on the grade of any given coin, and in some cases the difference in grading was as much as seven points off".

The NGC grading scale is based on the 70-point Sheldon coin grading scale. Strike designations include Prooflike and Deep Prooflike for circulation issue coins and Cameo and Ultra Cameo for Proof coins. Coins deemed high-end for their particular numeric grade receive a "Plus" designation. Coins considered attractive get a "Star" moniker. Cleaned, scratched, or otherwise impaired coins can be encapsulated and assigned a verbal "details" grade, but not a numerical one. Additional information is also given for graded and labelled mules and mint errors, specifying the particular error in addition to a numerical grade.

NGC claims employees are prohibited from participating in the commercial buying and selling of coins, to reduce potential conflict of interest. However the company's chairman and lead grader Mark Salzberg is the owner of Modern Coin Mart and GovMint, which are run from the same business park in Lakewood Ranch.

NGC claims states that it backs its evaluations with a guarantee: they will financially compensate for any overgrading or other assessment mistakes, based on their opinion of a coin's true market value.[9] However there is no public record of this happening.

NGC has used EdgeView® Holders since 2007 for the Presidential Dollar series and for all other coins since 2008. Since 2009, a scratch-resistant holder coating, similar to that used on eyeglass lenses, has been employed. NGC offers Oversize holders for coins larger than 45 mm and up to 120 mm, and Mega holders for coins larger than 120 mm and up to 180 mm.[10] NGC's label lists a coin's denomination, variety, grade, pedigree, serial number, and other info.[11][12]

Online research tools[edit]

NGC Cert Lookup verifies all NGC certified coins and helps combat against holder counterfeiting. Using the label serial number, NGC will reveal a coin's date, denomination, grade, photo (if any), and pricing and Census info. NGC Coin Explorer lists key info about many coin issues, such as mintages and values. The NGC Census reports how many examples of each issue NGC has certified by grade, which helps determine relative rarity. Census figures are often falsely inflated due to resubmissions of the same coins. NGC Coin Price Guide lists pricing data for most US coin (and some modern Chinese) issues. NGC Auction Central reports auction prices realized.[13]


Since at least 2016, NGC has been frequently criticized for its slow and unpredictable grading times [14][15][16][17][18][19] and misattributed holders.[20][21][22]

External links[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ "ANA Money Museum European Coins".
  3. ^ "ANA Money Museum US Coins".
  4. ^ "NGC is the official grading service of PNG". Professional Numismatists Guild. Retrieved 2016-07-12.
  5. ^ "PCGS Dealer Hall of Fame, with many references to PNG".
  6. ^ "Global Locations". NGC. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  7. ^ Starck, Jeff. "NGC grading room confidential". Coin World. Retrieved 2015-09-15.
  8. ^ "NGC expands 'plus' designation to world coins". Coin World. Retrieved 2015-09-15.
  9. ^ "THE NGC COIN GRADING SYSTEM". NGC. Retrieved 2016-07-12.
  10. ^ "NGC Holders". NGC. Retrieved 2019-07-11.
  11. ^ "NGC Unveils New Holder Design". NGC. Retrieved 2016-07-12.
  12. ^ "SCRATCH-RESISTANT COIN HOLDER". NGC. Retrieved 2016-07-12.
  13. ^ "NGC Research". NGC. Retrieved 2016-07-12.
  14. ^ "How Long Does NGC Grading Take? - Coin Community Forum".
  15. ^ "NGC Turnaround Time .... Ugh - Coin Community Forum".
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^ "And you thought PCGS turnaround times were bad".
  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^ "Mechanical Error and CAC Error - Makes you wonder?".