Mining Incentives Reduced as Litecoin Officially Halves

The halving for Litecoin, which is the fourth largest virtual currency by market capitalisation, has just taken place, consequently reducing the amount of block rewards its miners receive, by half. The block height of 1,680,000 where the halving was occurred, was reached at 10:16 UTC on Monday the 5th of July.

A halving, as the name suggests, is an event where the block rewards paid to miners is reduced by exactly half. Bitcoin’s halving is expected to take place in May 2020 and will see block rewards drop to 6.25 BTC from the 12.5 BTC where it currently is. For Litecoin, a halving takes place after every 840,000 blocks – which takes about four years – and this one has reduced block rewards from 25 LTC to 12.5 LTC.

The maximum number of Litecoins to ever be mined will be 84 million and the moment, about 63 million have already been produced, representing about 75% of the entire possible number. This means that only about 21 million additional Litecoins will ever be mined. According to the Litecoin Foundation, it is estimated that the maximum number will be reached sometime in 2142. In anticipation of the halving, Litecoin jumped to $120 in June, about four times its $30 price in January. At this time, Litecoin is trading at $98.80 according to data from CoinMarketCap.

There’s a good chance this halving would reduce the population of Litecoin miners because it could very well become difficult for miners to cover the huge electricity costs with reduced rewards. F2pool, one of the biggest mining pools by hashrate, has said that the three most cost-effective miners for Litecoin are produced by InnoSilicon and FusionSilicon X6. According to Shixing Mao, the f2pool co-founder, electricity costs could make any other older models “pretty much just shut down.”

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