July '23 Grading Recap
Published August 2nd, 2023
- Overall grading activity was +2% in July vs June (+1% YoY).
- PSA graded 1.04m cards - up 4% vs June and up 4% YoY
- SGC graded 95k cards - down 2% vs June and up 76% YoY
- Beckett graded 57k cards - down 24% vs June and up 14% YoY
- CGC (TCG only) graded 55k cards - down 7% vs June and down 36% YoY
July Grading Summary
July Grading Summary - Sports
July Grading Summary - TCG+
Items Graded - by Month
Items Graded - by Month - Excluding PSA
TCG Cards Graded at PSA
Items Graded by Era
Gem Rate Breakdown by Era
July 2023 PSA Grading Recap
- PSA graded 1,042,817 items during July; total output was up by 4% vs June and up 4% year-over-year.
TCG activity hits new high
- TCG was 49% of cards graded (vs 36% in June); grading activity spiked following the opening of PSA Japan in early July.
Set Summary - Sports & Other
2022 Prizm football hangs onto the top spot as momentum slows
- Added to the list in July: 2022 Donruss Optic football and 2020 Select football
- Dropping from the list: 2022 Bowman Chrome Prospect Autographs and 2022 Donruss football
Set Summary - TCG+
Japanese Pokemon sets take 8 of the top 10 spots
- Added to the list in July: 2023 Pokemon Svi EN-Scarlet & Violet, 2021 Pokemon Japanese Sword & Shield Eevee Heroes, Pokemon Japanese Promo Card Pack 25th Anniversary Edition, and 1977 Star Wars
- Dropping from the list: 2022 Pokemon Swsh Black Star Promo, Pokemon Sword and Shield Brilliant Stars, Pokemon Sword and Shield Silver Tempest, and 2021 Pokemon Celebrations Classic Collection
Player Summary - Sports & Other
Shohei Ohtani remains on top
- Added to the list in July: Kobe Bryant
- Dropping from the list: Ken Griffey Jr
Subject Summary - TCG
The top of the leaderboard holds as per usual
- Added to the list in July: Lillie
- Dropping from the list: Zapdos
Card Summary - Sports & Other
Elly De La Cruz first Bowman secures the top spot
Card Summary - TCG
Japanese Pokemon claims every spot on the leaderboard
What's Next for PSA?
PSA experienced a modest uptick in July, driven by the resurgence of its TCG business, which accounted for nearly 50% of all cards graded during the month.
The opening of PSA Japan played a significant role in this momentum, adding approximately 10,000 cards per business day to PSA's July results, starting around July 10.
With the opening of PSA Japan, the company can further ride the TCG wave that has dominated 2023 grading thus far.
However, the non-TCG business has shown mixed results this year, with basketball, in particular, experiencing a 60% decline year-over-year, limiting overall momentum.
The emergence of a breakout star like Victor Wembanyama could potentially reinvigorate the broader basketball market.
PSA has various levers in place to maintain grading activity at or above a million cards per month as the sports category rebuilds momentum.
The presence of PSA Japan, the NJ office, the COMC partnership, and the 90s+ sports special queue/backlog are expected to contribute meaningfully to this effort.
July 2023 SGC Grading Recap
- SGC graded 95,130 cards during July - a 2% decrease vs June and a 76% increase year-over-year (PSA re-opened service levels in July ‘22, which had a major impact last year).
Football activity spikes
Football activity is up 50% from June and double May and April.
2023 Topps moves back into the top spot thanks to the $9 Series 2 promo
Player (& Subject) Summary
Shohei claims the top spot
Wembanyama jumps onto the leaderboard along with 2023 Topps baseball
What's Next for SGC?
SGC had a solid July.
A year ago, SGC was dealing with PSA clearing its backlog and re-opening submission levels - which directly impacted SGC results.
The company has rebounded nicely since then - setting new highs for output on the back of strategic promotions with Topps.
Beyond promotions, SGC has hinted at some product announcements coming soon.
This presents an opportunity to leverage the current promotional momentum and foster long-term loyalty to the company's offerings.
Other Charts - CGC
What's Next for CGC?
Trading card momentum has softened and sports card momentum has meaningfully stalled.
With the CGC merger now in place, the combined entity can focus its efforts on getting more slabs in the hands of collectors.
Other Charts - Beckett
Card Summary - Sports
Card Summary - TCG
What's Next for Beckett?
Grading activity took a hit at Beckett in July, as both TCG and sports activity experienced a decline.
Since the company's transition to the new CEO in late April, the company has largely remained silent.
Perhaps, the plan is to pretend the grading scale change discussion never happened.
If that is the case, many stakeholders would prefer to see Beckett invest its resources in improving and modernizing their grading operations, including submissions, pop report, slabs, customer service, and more.
That said, until we hear more from the new leadership team, Beckett's priorities remain unclear.