An analysis of empty blocks on Bitcoin

Quick Take

  • Empty blocks on Bitcoin are defined as blocks that include only the coinbase block reward transaction
  • Since Bitcoin went live in 2009, approximately 15% of blocks mined were empty
  • From 2013 to 2019 Antpool mined ~35% of all empty blocks

Users of Bitcoin have consistently paid out tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of transaction fees to miners on the Bitcoin network. As actors that are driven by incentives, miners should logically aim to maximize the number of transactions included in the blocks they mine to collect those transaction fees.