Litecoin Mining Difficulty Is Hitting New Highs, Foundation Says

Litecoin mining difficulty is at a new high, peaking at just under 18 million hashes, according to a post by the Litecoin Foundation on cryptocurrency market data site,

Mining difficulty measures the average number of hashes required to “solve” a block. Litecoin miners compete by generating random hashes to find one lower than the target set by the network’s mining algorithm. Whoever wins this computationally intensive lottery gets to add a new block to the Litecoin blockchain and earns a reward.

The increase in Litecoin’s mining difficulty likely means the competition for miner rewards is heating up.

The cryptocurrency, sometimes referred to as “digital silver,” also has a “halvening” event on the horizon. When Litecoin was launched in 2011, miners received 50 litecoins (LTC) for successfully mining a block. That reward (called a “subsidy”) is halved every 840,000 blocks (roughly every four years). The third halving takes place in 2023 and reduces the current 12.5 LTC subsidy to 6.25 LTC.

The price of LTC is holding steady, trading at $68.04 at the time of publication. However, on Wednesday, LTC’s price spiked 13% in a single day, probably due to payments giant MoneyGram’s announcement that its U.S. customers will soon be able to buy, sell and hold LTC, bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) in the MoneyGram mobile app.

Read more: MoneyGram Debuts Crypto Purchases on Mobile App