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It's very common to see transactions that pay extremely high fee rates, easily 10, 100, or more times the any reasonable high-priority fee rate.

Who makes these transactions, and why do they overbid to get into blocks?

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  • In those transactions are the fees a negligible amount of the value transferred? Or are they somehow fixed (old wallets used to hardcode fees)? Apr 19 at 6:30

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The fee amount is at the discretion of the transaction author. Assuming the high amount was not either due to software constraints (see @AntoinePoinsot's comment above) or a mistake, you'd have to read their mind to know why an oddly high fee was set.

Here are some speculative reasons:

  • The transaction is important and the author wants "beyond reasonable doubt" confidence that it'll be confirmed in short order.
  • The author likes miners and wants to reward them.
  • The transaction could be at the end of a chain of low or no fee unconfirmed transactions and the author wants to provide incentive for them all to be mined.
  • The author wants to signal that they think the fee rate equilibrium should be higher.
  • The author wants to signal that they control plenty of bitcoin.
  • The author perceives the fee amount to be tied to an elaborate NFT scheme.
  • If the miner is (or is close to) the author, it could be a way of increasing fee per block metrics (and perhaps upwardly influence the future mean fee). Assuming the transaction is not broadcasted.

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