- Bitcoin’s mempool is getting clogged up, with the median confirmation time at its 3rd highest level ever
- Currently, transactions with standard fees are spending more than 3 hours in the mempool
- High fees are the best way to skip the mempool queue, but then then you could get caught in the mempool for hours
Bitcoin is doing all sorts of things this week, and its recent assault on $14,000 has awoken a huge number of traders from their slumber. There was a lot of selling pressure which caused Bitcoin to briefly touch $12,980, but soon enough the bulls came back with force, dragging it back into the $13,000 level.
If you’re planning on moving some BTC to your exchange of choice, or are simply looking to make a purchase, you’re going to need to set your fees to high. With the price action, more and more people are transacting in Bitcoin, sending the mempool into a frenzy.
Back to 2017 Sluggishness
Bitcoin is already not the fastest blockchain when it comes to making transactions, but when there’s a ton of market action, it becomes even slower. A lot of people try to save a bit of money and send using low fees, while some just opt for standard. In a usual environment, these fees will see you with 3 confirmations in around 40 minutes or so. However, with the price action we’ve seen in the past week, things are far from normal.
For those of you that were around in the 2017 crypto boom, you’ll remember people struggling to get their Bitcoin to an exchange so that they could cash out as Bitcoin came crashing down from its all-time highs. While we’re not quite there yet in terms of speed, it’s getting very close to it. With a transaction using high fees, you’re still looking at over 2 hours sat in the mempool.
When Will it Clear Up?
There’s no sign on when the mempool and the transaction backlog will start to clear off, but as more and more people get stuck in the queue, less people will be able to get their BTC to an exchange and sell. This in turn will help stabilize the price in the short-term, but it will cause the selling to become protracted as people’s transactions slowly hit their accounts and they sell at a slightly lower price a few hours later.
So, in the short-term it should prevent the price from crashing down to $12,500, but in the long-term we could see this move to $14,000 pushed onto the back burner. So, unless the price can stabilize and people stop trying to panic sell, then the mempool backlog isn’t going to reduce, it will only grow.
Set Fees to High!
Your best bet at getting your transaction included in a block this week is to set your fees to high. This might cost you a bit more, but if your transaction is important, then it’s your only way to get it completed before the end of the week. Median confirmation time is now at its 3rd highest time in history. Good luck and hopefully your transactions are processed soon!