DogeCoin passed 40 cents: Why that excites the internet

To the moon.

DogeCoin, initially designed to parody cryptocurrencies, surged Friday morning to reach a high of 43 cents, a record for the cryptocurrency that was worth 5 cents in March. The value has since dipped a bit from that peak to 38 cents. The market cap of DogeCoin — which started as a joke and is literally classified as “a memecoin” — is currently just over $48 billion.

It’s the culmination of a semi-ironic movement that’s involved thousands of buyers, tens of thousands of online posters and the world’s richest man, Elon Musk. Just as the Reddit community Wall Street Bets rallied to try to pump GameStop stock up to $1,000 per share (it got up to $483, short of the goal but a dramatic spike from the 52-week low of $3.77), cryptocurrency communities became attached to the idea of “sending” DogeCoin to 10 cents. Now it’s soared past that goal and then some.

In early January, each token was worth less than 1 cent. In late January, when both the GameStop and DogeCoin movements hit their stride, the value of DogeCoin shot up to 7.5 cents before sliding down to 2.5 cents. The coin has spent the past few months in the 3 cent to 7 cent range. On Sunday, its price began to rise, from around 6 cents, before it smashed the 10 cent milestone.

The surge from 10 cents to over 25 cents could be the result of Doge’s highest-profile supporter, Elon Musk, tweeting out support for the cryptocurrency on Thursday:

Another possible reason for the surge was a mishap by popular investing app Robinhood. Users found their orders involving DogeCoin were listed as “pending” for an extended amount of time, leading some to think this was a replay of Robinhood’s controversial decision to stop selling GameStop stock when it was skyrocketing in value. The company tweeted Thursday that an issue with orders has since been resolved.

If you’re familiar with cryptocurrency at all, you know Bitcoin and maybe Ethereum. Those are the two biggest cryptocurrencies, but underneath them is an entire market of smaller ones called “altcoins” — or, sometimes, “shitcoins.” These are like the penny stocks of the cryptocurrency world. Many aim or claim to have utility, or improve facets of the Ethereum blockchain, upon which most altcoins are built. Others are “memecoins,” which rise and fall in popularity simply because they’re kind of funny.

Created in 2013, DogeCoin was the first such memecoin. There are many others, and they’re preposterous. One simply called Meme launched last August at $1 and now trades at over $2,000.

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