Few people ask for the XEM news anymore. The blockchain platform hasn’t really made the headlines since hackers made off with $500m worth of NEM tokens from the Japanese crypto exchange Coincheck.
That was at the end of January when XEM tokens were just above the $1 mark. Like the market in general, 2018 has not been kind to the NEM price; two minor rallies have not stopped the coin’s downward trajectory. NEM was trading at just below $0.1 at the end of last week, giving it a market cap of $860m; it had reached $17bn at the beginning of the year.
2018 has not been kind to XEM’s market cap.
Despite this, NEM has been the big winner this week. Its market cap has spiked above the billion-dollar mark early on Tuesday, making each coin worth $0.11. NEM’s total value has increased by well over $100m in the past two days.
So what caused the NEM price spike? More importantly, what has NEM actually been up to for the last eight months?What is NEM again?
A quick recap: the New Economy Movement – NEM for short – is a smart contract-ready platform. XEM tokens are used to pay for dApp development and network fees, in the same way as Ether (ETH) is used on the Ethereum network. What makes NEM unique is its consensus algorithm. Known as Proof-of-Importance (POI), nodes are weighted on their network activity, as well as their wallet balance. This means nodes with smaller wallets can potentially have more influence on the NEM blockchain than their larger counterparts.
There are currently over 20 projects working on the NEM network. An infographic published last week on the project’s official Twitter feed shows five of these are payment platforms. These include a privacy coin Eroiy; a Brisbane-based project called TravelByBit, using cryptocurrencies to encourage tourism in parts of Australia; part of the retail payment provider Pundi X (NPXS) also uses the NEM network to enable users to purchase tangible objects with cry...