Paper Money

PMG places Star Designation on holders of notes with eye appeal

This Series 2009A $100 Federal Reserve note is a "star" or replacement note but its the note's eye appeal and Exceptional Paper Quality that earned it the PMG Star Designation on the front and back of the holder.

Image courtesy of PMG.

The June 12 to 15 at the International Paper Money Show in Memphis, Tenn., will be the site of the first offering of a new service from Paper Money Guaranty.

PMG graders will conduct on-site grading at the show, and all notes submitted with exceptional eye appeal will be eligible for the new PMG Star Designation. A ? symbol will appear on the PMG holder indicating the notes PMG Star Designation status.

PMG graders have determined a clear set of qualifications for notes to receive the PMG Star Designation, after consulting with industry experts and advanced collectors, according to the firm. 

Although eye appeal is one of the most subjective characteristics of notes, general standards are commonly used by numismatists to evaluate this important quality, according to the firm. 

For a note to be designated with a ? by PMG, it must exhibit exceptionally strong plate and/or overprint embossing, vibrant ink color, and pristine paper quality exceeding the well-established standards used to determine the Exceptional Paper Quality designation, according to PMG.

“There has been growing demand among collectors and dealers for PMG to impartially evaluate eye appeal and designate notes that are superior in that regard,” says Bruce Thornton, PMG finalizer. “After careful study, we have established criteria that we believe will make the PMG Star Designation the industry standard for exceptional eye appeal.”

All U.S. and world notes submitted to PMG during or after the IPMS in Memphis will be evaluated for the distinction of the PMG Star Designation. 

Notes that do not qualify for the Exceptional Paper Quality designation will be disqualified from receiving the star designation. 

Notes already graded by PMG may be resubmitted to PMG for evaluation for the star designation. 

To submit PMG-certified notes for reconsideration for the star designation, write “Designation Review” at the top of the PMG Submission Form.

For more information about the new designation, visit the firm’s website at

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