NGC Expands Early Releases

Posted on 12/13/2010

Popular designation is now available for all US and World Mint issues received by NGC during their first 30 days of release.

Artist's concept of 2011 Sacagawea $1
designated NGC Early Releases

Effective immediately, NGC is expanding the Early Releases designation. All US and World coins received by NGC or an NGC-approved depository within their first 30 days of issue will be eligible for the Early Releases designation. This includes bullion, currency and numismatic coinage issues. Previously, only US bullion coinage qualified.

All coins designated Early Releases include the text EARLY RELEASES within their description on the NGC certification label. Concurrent with the program expansion, a new blue Early Releases label is being made available for applicable issues. Other special labels and series-specific available from NGC, such as the American Liberty Series, are also used in combination with the Early Releases designation.

There is an additional eligibility requirement for all future Early Releases submissions. In prior years, NGC and approved depositories received coins within the 30-day Early Releases period and held them until they were submitted for certification. These coins retained their eligibility for the Early Releases designation, providing that NGC or the depository held them without interruption, and they could be submitted any time after receipt. A new rule, effective immediately, limits this holding period to 12 months after release. This means that, one year after issue, no coins can be submitted for Early Releases, even if they were received during the Early Releases period and held by NGC for that entire 12-month period. Population figures for Early Releases will be essentially frozen one year after a coin’s release.

Launched in 2006, more than 1,450,000 coins have been designated Early Releases by NGC, making it the most widely used and accepted release designation of its kind. Despite its considerable popularity, Early Releases coins account for only a small fraction of the coins minted for any given issue. For example, for the one-ounce gold 2010 Eagle $50, NGC has certified just 18,116 examples as Early Releases, compared to the coin's mintage of 1,093,000, or less than 2% of the total issue.

Unlike similar designations used in the industry, NGC does not accept packaging material or other documentation to support the release date, but instead requires that coins be received by NGC or pre-approved depositories within the 30-day window following their release. This rigid requirement makes NGC Early Releases the strictest of first-month designations. The newly instituted 12-month certification cut-off further adds to the stringency of this designation.

*Due to US Mint distribution schedule changes, as a courtesy to our customers, we have reset the Early Releases Cutoff Date for 2010 5 oz America The Beautiful quarters.

More in this issue...