EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 2785 - April 18, 2012     4 of 6

eBay Drops Coin-Grading Firms to Dealers' Dismay

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eBay dropped several coin-grading companies to the dismay of some coin dealers whose listings were impacted. eBay sent an email to some sellers and sent a media alert to publications including EcommerceBytes.

The alert said eBay had worked with numismatic authority John Albanese to develop standards that must be met for grading coins on eBay. Albanese is founder of CAC and NumismaticConsumer Alliance, and eBay said he was considered one of America's leading professional numismatists and noted as one of the world's authorities on coin grading and the rare coin market.

eBay said currently only Numismatic Guaranty Corporation and the Professional Coin Grading Service meet the new standards, and encouraged other grading companies that met the standards to contact it.

Now excluded is grading service ICG, and while eBay issued its media alert on Tuesday, sellers began reporting difficulties as far back as February.

On Tuesday, a seller called the situation a nightmare "From the email that I've just received from ebay (see below) I figure that to list say a state quarter with a Buy It Now price of $1, I need first to have it graded by PCGS or NGC (which costs some $20 or so). Any ideas?"

eBay spokesperson Johnna Hoff said new policies for coin listings go into effect May 30:

  • Listings for coins will be allowed to include a numeric grade in their listing title or item description only if the coin grading company providing the grade meetscertain objective standards. Coins that havenít been graded by such companies will be considered raw or ungraded.
  • For U.S. coins only, grading by companies meeting these standards will now be required for all coins listed with a Buy It Now, reserve, or start price of $2,500 and above.

eBay also announced that it was showcasing a collection of more than 300 Morgan Dollars, valued at more than $1 million, from six Professional Numismatists Guild member dealers. eBay will feature the collection on a special page from through April 29.

eBay recently banned listings for replica coins effective February 20th.

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About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to

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