Other Release Designations
NGC offers several designations for coins with a documented date of release. These
special designations are used by NGC when coins are accompanied by documentation
or received by NGC for certification within a specified time-window. NGC's conventions
for their use are described on this website.
First Day of Issue
| First Day Ceremony
| First Year of Issue
| First Strikes (discontinued)
| First Strike Ceremony Coins
| Numbered First Strike Editions
FIRST DAY OF ISSUE
NGC will designate FIRST DAY OF ISSUE on circulating US coins that have an official
release date. To qualify, coins must be received by NGC by the official release
date or by overnight mail or air carrier on the day immediately following the official
release date. Alternatively, coins still packed in sealed US Mint issue First Day
Covers are eligible for this designation. Private issue covers are not accepted.
Coins designated FIRST DAY OF ISSUE are encapsulated with regular-format NGC labels.
The US Mint in official statements has indicated that for certain coins it begins
production several weeks before the coins are scheduled to be released (“the
official release date”). By the official release date, the US Mint may have
produced a significant portion of the projected sales numbers for certain coins.
The US Mint issues coins through the Federal Reserve, which in turn makes arrangements
with banks and other financial institutions to ensure that the coins are in their
inventories up to two weeks prior to the official release dates. Coins received
by NGC for designation as First Day of Issue on or prior to their official release
dates may come from a number of commercial or individual submitters.
FIRST DAY CEREMONY
Occasionally, a US coin is officially released at a ceremony or event organized
by the US Mint or government body overseeing the coin’s release. NGC will
designate coins from such ceremonies as FIRST DAY CEREMONY. To qualify, submitters
must notify NGC in advance of the ceremony that they wish to submit coins for the
FIRST DAY CEREMONY designation. Additional supporting documentation may be required
for eligibility. In all cases coins must be sent by overnight courier from the ceremony
location and arrive at NGC on the day immediately following the ceremony.
FIRST YEAR OF ISSUE
NGC has developed a special label for use with US Mint first year of issue coins.
A first year of issue is the coin from the first dated year of a new design type.
For example, the Silver American Eagle was first issued in 1986; all American Silver
Eagles dated 1986, in both Proof and Mint State, are eligible for encapsulation
with this designation and special label which is green with the words FIRST YEAR
OF ISSUE at bottom and in overprint at top. A complete list
of eligible coins appears on our website. Additional certification fees
apply, and no supplementary documentation or packing is required when submitting
coins for this designation.
FIRST STRIKES (DISCONTINUED)
During 2006, NGC used the term "first strikes" for US bullion coinage shipped from
the US Mint within the first month of their official release. This designation is
no longer in use by NGC. First strikes designated coins are eligible for inclusion
in the NGC Registry and are reported individually on the NGC Census.
FIRST STRIKE CEREMONY COINS
There are other types of coins of early release which can be designated by NGC.
In some cases the words FIRST STRIKE have appeared on a regular NGC label. This
designation indicates that the encapsulated coin was struck during a first strike
ceremony at the US Mint and NGC has received appropriate substantiation of the fact.
When the US Mint releases a new coinage design, a special event can be held during
which notable figures related to that coinage will be invited to strike the first
of these coins. This has been used on States Quarters and other circulating and
NUMBERED FIRST STRUCK EDITIONS
On several occasions, NGC has received coinage with official mint documentation
stating that a particular group of coins were among the first examples produced.
These will be represented on their certification label indicating that the encapsulated
coin belongs to this edition. The size of the edition is also included (e.g., ONE
OF FIRST 1000 STRUCK; ONE OF FIRST 50,000 STRUCK). This designation can also be
applied to foreign coins when satisfactory supporting documentation is available.
This designation is available only on bulk submissions.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Does the US Mint sell "first strike" coins?
A. The US Mint does not currently use this term on any coins that
it sells. On their website, they state that, "Currently, there is no widely-accepted
and standardized numismatic industry definition of 'first strike.'" The designations
and terms described on this webpage are conventions developed by NGC for the certification
of early release coinage.
The US Mint announcement on "first strike" coinage can be viewed on their website: