The modern segment of the U.S. coin market continues to grow, and a
large part of the demand is being driven by third-party grading
services including Professional Coin Grading Service and Numismatic Guaranty Corp. These firms have
Registry Set programs that allow collectors to place their coin sets
in competition with other collectors and First Strike and Early
Release programs that acknowledge coins released by the U.S. Mint
during the first 30 days of a coin’s issue. Here are three low
population modern issues that recently brought exciting prices in auctions.
1997-W American Eagle $50 gold one-ounce bullion coin,
Proof 70 Deep Cameo, First Strike
PCGS began its “First Strike” program in 2005, and today the firm
provides the designation for coins released in the first 30 days of
the Mint’s issue date for a coin.
While the designation is most typically seen for modern American
Eagle bullion coins and commemorative issues, it can also be used on
coins that pre-date the First Strike program’s start date, if the
coins are submitted in the original unopened shipping box from the U.S. Mint showing a postmark date prior to the
specified PCGS cutoff date.
At a May 24 GreatCollections.com auction, one of two certified PCGS
Proof 70 Deep Cameo First Strike 1997-W American Eagle 1-ounce $50
gold bullion coins sold for $6,325. The coin was recently submitted to
PCGS in its original sealed shipping box from the U.S. Mint.
For perspective, PCGS has graded 229 other Proof 70 Deep Cameo
examples of this issue not designated First Strike, and several of
these have sold between $1,700 and $1,800 in recent auctions.
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