Sunday, April 29, 2007

PCGS vs NGC Grading: Apples and Oranges

NGC and PCGS grades are not the same. As shown in the graph below, for 1982 Pandas, PCGS clearly uses much tougher criteria than NGC. NGC graded 44% of 82 Pandas as MS69, but PCGS only allowed 16% to reach that level. In fact, you have to add PCGS MS67 (12%), MS68(16%) and MS69(16%) to equal NGC's MS69 rate. One could conclude from this that a PCGS MS67 coin could be equated with an NGC MS69 for rarity.

Dealers have noticed this too. They have sent 3 times as many coins through NGC. Could it be because they know NGC will give a higher grade?

Collectors beware. If you care about accurate and meaningful grading, stick with PCGS.

1 comment:

Jay Feldis said...

Follow-up, October 2012:

Since this article was written in 2006, many additional 1982 Pandas have been sent to NGC and PCGS for grading. NGC has apparently tightened their standards since then, bring the MS69 rate fron 44% down to about 15% overall - inline with PCGS.

While this shows more consistency between NGC and PCGS, it does not remove the dozens of MS69 slabbed coins that should really be MS68.