How Coins Are Graded, Part 1

October 17, 2016

With collectibles, condition is everything. For instance, a mint condition classic car may bring a fortune, whereas the same one rusted out may end up in a salvage yard. Clearly in this example, one is better than the other, but how does one assess their condition INCREMENTALLY? If one is only slightly better than another, than how is it graded? That is a major problem. With no clear grading guidelines, as soon as you leave one car to look at another, you have to keep your image of the first car in your mind in order to compare it to the next. That means trusting a major issue to your memory. No one’s memory is that good. Therefore, in the absence of a definitive grading scale, grading is very subjective. This accounts for the huge disparities in sales records from one car to another.

All collectibles share this common grading concern - EXCEPT rare coins. With rare coins, grading is compartmentalized into an easy to understand scale. Then the coins are sealed in holders with the grade inside the holder, makingcomparative analysis a breeze. In this new series Golden Art will be explaining grading, from its origins to its implementation. It is a fascinating and informative way to understand the great treasures in the Golden Art collection.
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In 1990, with rare coin values in their infancy, Greg Holloway smashed the record books with the first sale in world history of any rare coin to bring over $1 million. Despite the fact that the world was in recession at the time, this transaction proved that rare coins have great appeal beyond economic conditions.

Greg actually began his career in 1970 at the age of 13. Before the end of his teenage years, he was recognized by his peers as a top expert. A virtual fixture at numismatic events, Greg has personally attended 1400 rare coin conventions.

Between 1986 and 1987, Greg was one of the 33 founding dealer members of both PCGS and NGC, the worlds two largest professional coin grading services. He was also one of the six original shareholders and graders of NGC for a brief period of time. In 1987, Greg was also one of the original shareholders of the worlds first real time rare coin trading system.

For over 20 years, Greg has been one of the worlds most prolific and respected instructors in the field of numismatics having given hundreds of webinars and teaching at in person conferences.

Today Greg is still active in all aspects of education of rare coins, having recently written the first ever encyclopedia of large English gold coins. Having been the first person in world history to sell any rare coin for over $1 million, Greg is eminently qualified to search for future $1 million coins that can still be bought for a fraction of this sum.

Watch more of Greg's teachings free at