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Several witnesses have agreed to routinely make any necessary SBD interest rate updates at the beginning of each month and I have joined this agreement. The purpose of this policy is to ensure that everyone has an opportunity to collect interest (which can only be done once every 30 days) before the rate changes. Credit for the idea goes to @pfunk. (To collect interest, as long as it has been at least 30 days since your last interest payment, you must perform some SBD transaction (or SBD savings tranasction for SBD savings). This can include sending funds to yourself.)

Only in exceptional circumstances will we make any interest rate changes mid-month. While this does mean people may not always be able to collect interest before the rate changes, we will try to minimize this, but everyone should still be aware that the SBD interest is explicitly a variable rate which can, in theory, change at any time.

Accordingly, on January 1 I plan to reduce my APR from the current 6% to 4%. I will also reduce my price feed discount from 3% to 2%. Reasons for these changes can be found in my previous witness update posts, especially the most recent one.

I believe 2% is still likely too high a price feed discount for current conditions, if all witnesses were using a discount at all. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Several witnesses have been using 0% (or in a couple of cases even a negative discount, which I don't agree with at all as it violates the smart contract intent to allow SBD to be redeemed for one USD worth of STEEM). The lack of a discount provides no conversion incentive despite the still relatively high debt ratio and the need keep to the debt from growing. Since the feed is averaged between witnesses, if others are too low, I feel I need to err on the higher side.

I would very much prefer to see witnesses agree to maintain a small discount of likely 1% or less, but still sufficiently above zero during higher debt conditions to offer enough conversion incentive and shrink outstanding SBD supply. During low debt conditions, the discount can be brought all the way to zero to discourage conversions and allow the SBD supply to slowly grow.

Over the past month or so I have sold a net of about 15000 SBD from my stability fund (formerly containing 25K SBD, now about 10K) in order to reduce the SBD price when it has drifted above 1 USD. During periods when SBD is experiences fluctuations below 1 USD, I plan to support the price by purchasing more SBD for the fund.

My internal market maker bot has continued to provide continuous service with less than 1/2% price spread. It has now completed approximately 20000 trades. I plan to continue increasing the available trade size, but I have only been doing this slowly for now.

I worked with several other witnesses, most notably @abit and @bhuz (EDIT: also @aizensou) in testing and identifying performance problems with the new ChainBase implemention of the Steem node software, particularly on low-memory and low-I/O-speed systems. We were able to find good workarounds and have recommended these to witnesses and node operators experiencing problems (see @abit post for more details).

Rewards from this post (in whatever form received -- STEEM, SBD, and/or SP) will be converted to SBD and burned, as were previous witness post rewards. Proof of the burn will be posted as a comment reply.

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Thank you for update! My APR will be 4% from tomorrow and will evaluate as we see changes on a market. I didn't have any discount, but I think I will have 1% as you suggest. Also will reevaluate most of my witness votes tomorrow. Happy New Year, @smooth!!!

I will mirror your downward adjustment of the APR%

I don't know if people understand how important is your work that you do for Steemit! Anyway, I think you made a lot of people happy so I wish you a Verry Happy New Year! Cheers!

Interesting to see a post by the infamous smooth has garnered only a relative few votes. Maybe this isn't the kind of feedback you were looking for, but it's the thought that struck me first. Wow, 15k SBD you've sold. Are you doing that as a public service, meaning is that something you wanted to do or are you doing it only for the purpose of keeping the SBD stable? Sorry for the strange reply. Have a fantastic weekend, be safe, and Happy New Year to you.

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In one of my earlier posts I explained the SBD Stability Fund as something I was doing as a witness to help keep SBD stable. At the time witness pay was a lot higher and we all took on a variety of projects, sponsorships, etc. as part of the position. Now that witness pay has been cut about 85%, we're mostly just paid to sign blocks and adjust SBD parameters, but I've kept my existing projects going for now.

In the case of the fund, since the goal is to sell slightly above SBD and/or buy slightly below, it could ideally make a small profit. But that is not guaranteed. The market maker bot, another project of mine, had large losses prior to HF16 (one of the reasons for HF16 was that the previous structure made non-subsidized market making almost a guaranteed loss) but has been doing a bit better since.

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A sincere thank you for all your doing to keep this eco-system healthy. I'll be paying more attention to your efforts as well as the other wintesses.

Thanks for the update! Do you have the workarounds for low-memory and low I/O speed written somewhere accessible?

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https://steemit.com/witness-category/@abit/best-practice-running-steemd-v0-16-0
https://steemit.com/witness-category/@bhuz/steemd-v0-16-0-and-chainbase-i-o-issues-and-possible-solutions

In addition to those, you can get some improvement (more so on a full node than a low-mem witness node) by using zswap (comressed memory). I don't have a specific writeup for that though.

If you are trying to use a low-mem witness node in less than 8 GB or a full node in less than 16 GB it is probably hopeless for now though. Upcoming improvements should make that possible again.

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Thanks for the info.

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A bit more info about zswap can be found here: https://steemit.com/witness-category/@aizensou/witness-update

Thanks @smooth! You're doing an awesome job :)

@smooth resteemed so others would know we have to let the SBD circulate so there won't be any printing necessary, read it some time on one of your replies with clayop before ... and thank you for writing it idiot proof - it's a lot easier to understand this way.

okay, I shall burn some of my SBD, some I need to keep for emergency purposes.

Happy New Year!!!

I just voted for you as a witness,keep up the good work.

Thanks for the update! Happy New Year!

Proof of rewards burn: steemd

I came here to see if this was you @smooth and the comments helped me out ;) I didn't know you were a witness, voting for you now :)

@smooth.witness please check your chat, I left you a message thank you

Thank you for the updates. I've listened to it this week and I only forgot this post was an interesting one I wanted to reply to.

I agree with you on the price discount.

Great, thanks for the regular updates @smooth. Voted to add to your burn pool. Thanks for aiding in maintaining SBD stability.