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Can the mining reward ever go up?

I believe the answer is no, and the only way it will go up is if the miners decide to change the protocol.

But, I wanted to check with the experts. Thanks!

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  • The question is similar yet different. For instance, if the protocol were changed, you could increase the block subsidy reward while still deciding to keep the total supply at 21 million.
    – septerr
    Mar 23 at 20:06
  • the gist of the answer in the linked question is that by running the code, you can verify all consensus parameters (such as the specific reward schedule) for yourself. It extends far beyond simply increasing the total supply.
    – chytrik
    Mar 29 at 10:04

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The mining reward is composed of two parts, transaction fees and some newly created coins referred to as the block subsidy. The block subsidy follows a strict schedule which halves the amount every 210,000 blocks and does not increase. The transaction fees are users' bids for getting their transactions included in blocks. At times of high blockspace demand, transaction fees can increase substantially.

Therefore, the mining reward of blocks can both go up and down as transaction fees vary. The subsidy will only ever decrease, unless the entire Bitcoin ecosystem agrees to amend the protocol.

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  • Thank you :) Makes sense! I was referring to block subsidy by mining reward, but did not know the term. Thank you!!
    – septerr
    Mar 23 at 20:05

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