A beginner’s guide to the blockchain platform and cryptocurrency NEM (XEM), as well as how to buy, sell and trade XEM in the US.
New Economy Movement (NEM) is a blockchain platform that powers the Smart Asset System. This system is intended to be a customizable blockchain solution that can be used to provide services like payments, messaging, token creation, secure records and potentially much more.
XEM is the native token of the NEM network. For more information on how the NEM platform works, the function of the XEM token and how to buy XEM in the US, keep reading.
Where to buy XEM
You can buy XEM on several cryptocurrency exchanges, including:
A step-by-step guide to buying XEM
If you want to buy XEM, here’s one example of how you can do it:
Step 1. Register for an account with an exchange that allows you to buy XEM
XEM isn’t listed on every possible cryptocurrency exchange around the world, so the first step is to find a suitable exchange that lists XEM in one or more currency pairings.
You can then sign up for an account by entering your email address and creating a password. Depending on the platform, you may be able to start trading right away or you may need to provide your full name, contact details and photo ID before you can gain full use of your account.
Make sure you also enable two-factor authentication on your account for increased security.
Step 2. Deposit funds into your account
A number of cryptocurrency exchanges don’t allow you to exchange fiat currency, such as US dollars (USD), for XEM. When this is the case, you’ll need to first acquire a cryptocurrency that’s listed in a currency pairing with XEM, such as Ethereum (ETH) or bitcoin (BTC), before you can complete a trade.
Step 3. Buy XEM
Navigate your way to the markets or exchange section on your chosen trading platform and search for the currency pairing you want, for example XEM/BTC.
You’ll then need to follow the links to buy XEM and enter the purchase amount in either XEM or the other currency you’re trading. Take a moment to review the full transaction details, including any fees that apply, before confirming the purchase.
How to sell XEM
If you decide you want to sell your XEM, look for the link that allows you to sell XEM and then follow the prompts to enter your specific transaction details. However, it’s important to remember that depending on the exchange you’re using, it may not be possible to directly trade XEM for the currency you want.
Which wallets can I use to hold XEM?
Rather than storing your XEM on a cryptocurrency exchange, which exposes you to security risks, it’s recommended that you use a secure wallet designed for the safe storage of XEM.
The official NEM desktop wallet is available for download on Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems, while mobile wallets are also offered for iOS and Android devices.
How NEM works
Created in 2014 and launched in 2015, NEM is not a fork of another coin but was built from the ground up with the aim of creating an enterprise-grade blockchain solution that can seamlessly integrate with existing business systems. NEM was written in Java but at the time of writing is being rewritten in C++ as part of the “Catapult” update, which is scheduled for release later in 2018.
The NEM blockchain is used to power what NEM calls the Smart Asset System. This system allows users to customize their own blockchain to create a place to securely store their digital assets. A global network of nodes running the NEM core software is used to confirm transactions and secure the network, with the network used as an API Gateway server.
Unlike other cryptocurrencies that utilize proof-of-work or proof-of-stake systems, NEM uses a proof-of-importance algorithm to achieve consensus. Each node has its own importance score, which is a measure of how much you’ve invested into the NEM system and determines how often you can harvest (similar to mining in proof-of-work systems or staking in proof-of-stake systems) XEM.
In this way, active participation in the NEM network is encouraged and incentivized.
Key things to consider if you’re thinking about buying XEM
Cryptocurrencies are risky and complicated, and buying any one of these volatile assets is a highly speculative move. With this in mind, it’s important to carefully research any cryptocurrency before you buy.
If you’re thinking of purchasing XEM, consider the following factors first:
- Supply. According to CoinMarketCap at the time of writing (2/20/18), the circulating supply of XEM was 8,999,999,999.
- CoinCheck hack. When Japan-based cryptocurrency exchange CoinCheck was hacked in January 2018, 523 million NEM were stolen via several unauthorized transactions. Following the theft, the NEM Foundation revealed that it had “tagged” all of the compromised coins and was tracking their movements on the blockchain.
- How it works. If you’re new to the world of blockchain and cryptocurrencies, NEM can seem like a complicated and confusing system. For more details on how it all works, take a closer look at the following technical reference paper.
- Importance score. NEM is designed to reward accounts that participate in the economy. The balance of an account, who transacts with that account and how much it transacts with others are all taken into consideration to calculate an account’s importance. This importance score then determines who is allowed to generate a block on the network.
- Harvesting. In the NEM system, harvesting is the process of generating blocks and earning the transaction fees in that block as a reward. In order to harvest, you’ll need to have a vested account balance of at least 10,000 XEM. When coins are added to your account, they start out as part of the unvested balance but become vested gradually over time.
- Competitors. NEM isn’t the only crypto focused on smart contracts or smart assets. Ethereum (ETH), NEO (NEO), Lisk (LSK), Stratis (STRAT), Waves (WAVES) and more will all be competing with NEM on one level or another for mass adoption.
- Use cases. In the real world, NEM’s Smart Assets System is designed to manage all manner of digital assets, including everything from stock ownership and loyalty rewards programs to supply chains and health records. It can also be used to create your own cryptocurrency or crowdfunding token. Check out the list of potential use cases on the NEM website to get a better idea of whether or not you think this technology could achieve widespread adoption.
- NEM Foundation. NEM is backed by the NEM Foundation, which is incorporated in Singapore and has a mission to “introduce, educate and promote the use of the NEM blockchain technology platform on an international scale to all industries and institutions”.
By assessing these and other factors, you’ll be able to form a clearer picture of whether or not you should buy XEM.