The Halving (sometimes referred to as “the halvening”) is the moment when Bitcoin’s block subsidy gets cut in half. The halving of Bitcoin’s block subsidy occurs every 210,000 blocks (roughly every 4 years) and is a key feature of Bitcoin. It is because of the halving of the block subsidy that Bitcoin ultimately will have a capped supply of 21 million bitcoin.
The Halving will continue to occur every 210,000 blocks until the block subsidy reaches 1 satoshi, the smallest unit of bitcoin at 0.00000001 BTC. As Bitcoin’s codebase parameters currently state, at that point, the next block subsidy will simply drop to zero, and miners will only collect transaction fees.
The Halving creates predictable scarcity: One of Bitcoin’s key features is that it is hard capped at 21 million bitcoin. This results in true, predictable scarcity. There will never be 21,000,000.00000001 bitcoin without a consensus change to the rules (in fact, there will never even be 21 million bitcoin either, as the actual number of bitcoin that will be released based on Bitcoin’s supply formula is 20,999,999.9796). The mechanism by which this hard cap is created is the block subsidy halving. Therefore, these halving events are crucial to the predictable scarcity of bitcoin.
The Halving has happened twice before.
On November 28, 2012, Bitcoin’s block subsidy dropped from 50 BTC per block to 25 BTC per block.
On July 9, 2016, Bitcoin’s block subsidy dropped from 25 BTC per block to 12.5 BTC per block.
The next Bitcoin Halving will happen at block 630,000 and is expected to occur around May 11, 2020. The mining reward will adjust from 12.5 BTC to 6.25 BTC.
Because there is a lower reward amount for miners, the value of Bitcoin could increase because there will be less selling pressure from the miners. In the previous halving events,
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