"Fee Switch" Pilot Update & Vote

Hey (personal opinions), super interested to see this experiment go live. Love that the approach is to test this small and evaluate.

Proposal Success Metrics:
The metric to measure success of the experiment is the following: If trading execution is not diminished for the pools with the “fee switch” turned on – the experiment is a success. Note that this criteria explicitly does not consider the impact of the fee switch on liquidity provider returns.

Throwing out some other ideas to evaluate for the eventual analysis:

Is this good/bad/non-consequential for the Uniswap product?

  • LP Flows: Compare net inflows-outflows for “fee switch” pools vs ~equivalent non-“fee switch pools” & other DEX’s pools (i.e. does this cause LPs to leave? With an attempt to control for price movement & external factors)
  • Volume Share: Is Uniswap’s DEX market share of volume for these pools higher/lower/unchanged? Do we see any patterns of volume moving to alternative pairs (i.e. other stables, other fee tiers)?

Does this matter for token holders?

  • UNI holder composition: Do we see an increased UNI holder base, do tokens get more concentrated or distributed? (Could measure this with the first forum post as the “start date” - also thinking of this like user acquisition/retention/churn)
  • UNI holder loyalty: Do we see greater/unchanged Uniswap usage by UNI holders? (i.e. raw volume, LPing, share of holders’ total DEX volume - Thinking of this like how Prime made consumers more loyal to Amazon)

I’m sure this is being considered, but it would be great to see another Grants Competition to analyze this!


I just want to point out a few questions that I have, I hope you guys can answer them. We have analyzed the Uniswap largest pools, and most of the liquidity provided is done by a few actors, some of which are providing liquidity although they are out of range =( see:

161944 (USDC/ETH 0.3%) 9M
368120 (USDC/ETH 0.3%)10M
314029 (USDC/ETH 0.3%) 6M
259042 (USDC/ETH 0.3%) 12M
More than 20% of the pool is filled by 4 LP

360541 (USDC/ETH 1%)10M
50% of the pool is filled by one LP - Maybe good to ask him if ok - But I guess as you guys chose that pool you probably have already discussed with them. If not, that would be a mistake.


As a large Uniswap LP ([RFC] The Optimism-Uniswap Protocol Liquidity Mining Program - #20 by research), we are delighted if you put a 1/10 fee in the protocol to foster innovation, increase utility and VOLUME for the platform, we believe this is absolutely amazing, please put the fee switch on, for every pool we LP, please! We will vote for this!

My main question is “how to actively but organically increase volume on Uniswap?” Short term LM incentives are not a long-term viable solution IMO.

BMV - Bring More Volume - Why do people trade on DEX? Who trades on DEX? How do people trade on DEX? Isn’t the DEX volume mostly automated? Isn’t DEX volume mostly related to Arbitrage and MEV opportunities? Is there a competition between CEX and DEX or are they complementary and one needs the other for it to work properly ? Do CEX use DEXes? If not, why not?

I think the discussion should be centered around this rather than knowing if LP will stay or leave because of the fee switch. If fees increase 50% thanks to Fee Switch, why would LP care about a 10% tax on top of this. If volume decreases drastically because of Fee Switch, then LP might need to derisk and exit LPing even if the tax was 0.5%.

Hope that little grain of salt helps =)

Looking forward to discuss.


We (Blockchain @ Michigan) are in favor of moving forward with the fee switch pilot. The community must understand that this implementation is merely a 120 day test on a select few pools with the lowest % fee collection possible. The tradeoff of not going forward with experimentation is stifling governance/revenue model innovation.

As for success metrics, we should make those more clear to remove any confusion. @guil-lambert’s comment on tracking the ETH-stable trades via the SwapRouter before and after fee switch would be a good addition.


Hi Uniswap community. I’d like to share my thoughts on this proposal as I think it is a very important moment for Uniswap. I come here as someone who wants to see DeFi succeed and sees Uniswap as integral to this. The research by Alastor and the Uniswap Foundation has been excellent and should be used to continue to drive discussions on the fee switch, but I think now is the wrong time to execute this proposal.

First, I feel for the Uniswap community who may be hurting due to price action of the UNI token. The crypto markets are down and the Uni token is as well. It is natural to want to pursue changes when things seem like they are not going well. In this situation, however, I think that inaction is the best action.

There are two core reasons why I think this is not a good idea. First, I think a fee switch would be counterproductive to the objectives identified by Alastor. I fully agree that TVL, market share, and trading volume growth should be the Uniswap Protocol’s top priorities in this phase of its lifetime. While we may identify that the fee switch does not or has minimal negative impact on these metrics for certain pools, taxing LPs certainly cannot help here. I see only downside across the core KPIs.

The other reason is that this proposal could have very serious and unpredictable negative externalities for the Uniswap community. The Uniswap Foundation’s brief discusses the severe lack of clarity for DeFi in the U.S. It is very possible that this proposal could negatively impact community members like Uniswap Labs, the Uniswap Foundation, and even individuals in the community. I don’t think the proposed exploration is justifiable amidst these uncertainties.

The community treasury is large and there is no lack of funding for growth initiatives. There is no need to risk stifling growth or any other consequences right now.

Today UNI is the single most valuable DeFi governance token by market capitalization. This isn’t because of the prospect of immediate cash flows. It is because the token marks ownership in a decentralized community for the single most revolutionary and useful protocol in all of DeFi. The Uniswap vision is far bigger than a fee switch. It should not be jeopardized or hindered at this point in the protocol’s lifetime for the exploration of unnecessary fees.

I do not hold any UNI nor do I have any exposure to UNI. This is not financial or legal advice. I am only providing my thoughts on this unprecedented initiative and will support the Uniswap community in its decision.


At GFX, we’ve been working towards getting the Fee Switch turned on for more than a year and, over the last several months, have been slowly gathering opinions from delegates and UNI holders. Our general observation has been that most UNI holders are interested in seeing the protocol monetized. The differences in opinion tend to come from when and how the protocol should be monetized. Some believe it should be put off until Uniswap gains greater market share, while others believe that monetizing the protocol today could rekindle interest in the protocol, governance, and UNI. Over the last six months, there has been a jump in interest in getting the switch activated, and now how has become the main question.

The how (implementation) generally consists of the flowing questions (ignoring v2 to simplify this):

  1. Which pools should protocol fees be turned on for?
  2. What should the protocol fee be set to?
  3. How will the protocol set the fees?
  4. How will the protocol claim the fees?
  5. How will the protocol manage the positions it will accrue?
  6. What will the protocol do with its revenue?

However, those questions only address the technical implementation of the Fee Switch. There are several legal questions we’ve come across that voters would like to see addressed, such as the following:

  • Is Uniswap responsible for paying income taxes (and other potentially relevant taxes)?
  • Do UNI voters need to come up with their own process to assess whether assets in the protocol are or aren’t securities similar to traditional exchanges?
  • What might happen if Uniswap generates fees from a pool that contains an asset designated as a security?

We think there are certain ways to activate the Fee Switch, which could maximize the value of the protocol while minimizing legal risks.

The metric to measure success of the experiment is the following: If trading execution is not diminished for the pools with the “fee switch” turned on – the experiment is a success.

We’ll be voting against the proposal if it progresses to a formal governance vote because we believe the primary metric of success is unlikely to be met with the proposed implementation. Additionally, the proposal needs to address the above key questions. The below explains why we believe success is unlikely; we can make a follow-up post regarding why the proposal doesn’t sufficiently address the above question if it needs to be clarified.

While some may say that the proposal is merely an “experiment,” an unsuccessful implementation will likely hinder future efforts to monetize the protocol and reflect poorly on the state of Uniswap.

Question: Why do we think the proposal will not meet its stated success metric?

If passed, the proposal will set a protocol fee of 1/10 of the fee tier of the pool for the designated pools: ETH-USDT 5bp, DAI-ETH 30bp, & USDC-ETH 100bp. For example, the USDC-ETH 100bp pool applies a 100bp fee to trades and distributes the full fee to the LPs. With the fee applied, the fee on swaps remains the same, but the fee to LPs drops to 90bps.

Necessary context:

The protocol has four fee tiers: 1bp, 5bp, 30bp, and 100bp. Each asset pair can only have these four fee tiers; no additional pool can exist. For example, there is one ETH-USDC 1bp pool, one ETH-USDC 5bp pool, one ETH-USDC 30bp pool, and one ETH-USDC 100bp pool. If someone were to try to make a second ETH-USDC 30bp, the factory contract would prohibit it. If someone tried to make the inverse pair like USDC-ETH 30bp, the factory contract would also prohibit it.

To help normalize this information, its best to view them in a familiar format:

Tiers Taker Maker
100bp 1.00% -1.00%
30bp 0.30% -0.30%
5bp 0.05% -0.05%
1bp 0.01% -0.01%

Takers are people swapping with the pool, whereas the Makers are the LPs in the pool. Makers are currently receiving a 100% rebate for liquidity provided.

Answer: By introducing a 1/10 Protocol Fee on select pools, the protocol is reducing the rebate the LP will earn. Further, by only introducing the Protocol Fee to select pools, active LPs will likely move to one of the other three fee tiers where the rebate remains 100% or will move to a like-kind pair.

For example, if we were an active LP in the ETH-USDT 5bp pool and saw a rebate reduction of 10%, but the ETH-USDC 5bp still offered a 100% rebate, we’d simply move to that pool instead.

Potential alternatives
Below are our brief thoughts on implementing a Protocol Fee for the purposes of analyzing changes to LP behavior and swap execution. The list is from the most optimal implementation to the least optimal implementation to active Protocol Fees.

  1. Set a single fee for all Uniswap deployments: leaving LPs the fewest alternatives
  2. Set a single fee for a single deployment: LPs could move to another deployment
  3. Set a single fee for a pair, and it’s like kind pairs: the LPs could move to other assets
  4. Set a single fee for a select few pairs: the LPs could move to like-kind pools

Call to action
If you’re a UNI token holder and supportive of a thoughtful proposal to turn on the fee switch, please reach out.


The immediately answer from LPs will say “no”, since this switch will cut off immediately.

But are they really gonna to do so? Taking economically, A rational LPs will only do it if they can find a better alternatives, which I consider would be very difficult.

It could be another protocol, or another Uni pool but which haven’t selected for this trail.

If the first case happen, then UniSwap has a competitor, we need be careful; if it’s the 2nd cases, there are not much to worries, UniSwap is still the best protocol to stay.

One more thing, those smart LPs, they are wise enough to keep some Uni token in pocket if they going to vote yes. An immediate return on token will surpass the LP income at least a medium long period of time.

let it do,i agree…just do it

Hello Uniswap community. Let me start by saying I support this proposal as written. It represents a first step towards learning how to safely charge fees on Uniswap. There is still plenty more work to be done after using intelligence gained from the trial.

This is a pilot. The decision should come down to:

  • Whether it will further intelligence by learning something about the protocol?
  • Whether this something is worth knowing?
  • What are the costs associated with running the pilot?

The focus of this proposal is narrow.

The proposal is solely designed to test the impact of the “fee switch” on protocol usage.

Observing the reaction of liquidity capital (taking broader market conditions into account) will be useful in assessing how bearable fees are on Uniswap v3. I have little confidence that anyone knows how LP’s will react. Uniswap is a marketplace. There are extremely complex dynamics affecting behaviors.

If fees do turn significant capital away from these pools (or spread out over wider ticks, who knows) then it is worth learning that and improving in future tests. The only way to truly find out is in a live simulation. There is also a predefined end to the pilot. Importantly, the default is not to continue indefinitely.

As I see it the costs are the risk that one or both of the following happen:

  • Capital permanently leaves these pools. All else equal that widens Uniswap v3 spreads relative to alternatives.
  • Legal issues. I’ll leave that to someone who knows what they’re talking about.

The recent average TVL of these three pools together is approximately $70mm TVL combined relative to Uniswap v3 Ethereum’s $2.6bn. This represents 2.7% of TVL compared to an average standard deviation of the change in TVL of around 5%. The benefit of learning the effect on the Uniswap protocol in a controlled, time limited trial is worth risking a small percentage of this TVL.

1 Like

yeah At the end of the day, we first and foremost want to focus on studying the impact of the fee switch on trade execution for swappers , and not on its impact on LP revenue.

1 Like

We appreciate the initiative from @leighton and @guil-lambert moving this pilot program forward. In general, Alastor supports moving forward with a fee switch pilot program, even if it doesn’t necessarily match our specific recommendations verbatim. A few additional thoughts from the Alastor side of things:

Regarding Pilot Pools - While we stand by our stance that implementing the fee switch on lower fee tier pools creates perverse incentives for LPs relative to the overall goals of the community, we are not against including one of these pools in a pilot to test this thesis. That said, we would recommend using the 0.05% ETH-DAI pool rather than 0.05% ETH-USDT pool as the 0.05% test case. Our rationale:

  • ETH-USDT makes up the largest ETH-Stable spot-trading market in the world today (~3x the volume of ETH-USDC across both DEX/CEX competitors), of all ETH pairs Uniswap should be targeting this volume rather than disincentivizing its most efficient liquidity

  • Relatedly, Uniswap decentralized market share in ETH-USDT is much lower than that of the other two ETH-Stable pairs being considered (~50% against, versus >90% in both ETH-USDC and ETH-DAI)

  • While the ETH-DAI pools do indeed have smaller TVL than ETH-USDT, they are similar when normalized against volume serviced

Ultimately, we believe that it would behoove the community to utilize ETH-USDT as the primary test case to see if market share can truly be improved by utilizing the fee switch as an LP incentivization tool given the market share runway that currently exists.

Regarding Tracking & Measurement - To echo @msilb7, we would strongly encourage defining decentralized volume market share as the primary measurement of success for this pilot. We also would recommend (at a bare minimum) tracking order volume prior to and during the pilot program as well as tracking TVL flow, on both an aggregate and on an individual level in the days and weeks following implementation. It is important that the ramifications of this pilot not simply be considered anecdotally.


Larry from Reverie here.

First off, I really like the idea of running experiments with the fee switch. That’s because over the long run, I view protocol fees as the principal way for the protocol to support itself in a sustainable manner.

Having said that, I think we need to understand the tax impact before we turn on the fee switch.

Simply put, turning fees on will generate revenue for the protocol (even if the accrued fees are not paid out to tokenholders). As I see it, the known unknown is “who will cover the potential tax bill on profits generated by the protocol?”

Before we have a better answer to this question, I don’t think it’s wise to turn on the protocol fee switch.


I’m struggling to get my head around this tax argument. What makes Uniswap protocol taking a share of fees different from pretty much every other defi protocol doing so?

1 Like

Hey everyone,

Miles and Porter here with a16z. Thanks to @Leighton and @guil-lambert for their proactive stance on the fee switch discussions. From our perspective, the risks associated with turning on the fee switch generally fall into three brackets and could be addressed as follows:

  • Risks Associated with Commissions - Generally, there are regulatory risks associated with taking commissions on the trading of assets, though as indicated in the Uniswap Foundation’s post, most of these can likely be addressed by limiting commissions to trading pairs with an unambiguous status as not a security.

  • Risks Associated with UNI Token - The protocol accruing profits from trading also impacts the analysis as to whether any transactions of UNI tokens could be deemed to be transactions involving investment contracts requiring the application of U.S. securities laws. However, given the significant decentralization of the Uniswap protocol, we do not believe it would be reasonable for anyone to be dependent on the managerial or entrepreneurial efforts of any party associated with the Uniswap protocol. Further, if profits are not directly distributed to UNI token holders, the complications and impact of such a proposal could be greatly reduced.

  • Risks Associated with Organizational Structure - If the fee switch is turned on, then the DAO could have control over accruing profits, which could have implications for tax purposes. We believe a very narrowly tailored legal entity structure (relating only to the profits accrual and use of those funds) could potentially be used to enable the DAO to pay any required tax obligations and could provide DAO members with limited liability protections. The additional goals of any such structure would be to maximize flexibility of the DAO, enable UNI members to opt out from participation in such structure, limit the impact of the structure on the DAO’s broader activities and regulatory positioning, and preserve the ability of the DAO to dissolve such structure if an alternative approach became available.

We’re actively working to assess the above risks as well as a potential entity structure that meets the organizational requirements, and we’re interested in hearing other perspectives and proposed solutions for the risks identified above.

However, for this specific discussion, we ultimately cannot support (and will vote against) any proposal that fails to account for these factors. While we appreciate the efforts to drive the fee switch forward and believe this proposal solves the first two issues, in its current form it does not address the third one - an organizational structure for tax purposes.

Even though the proposal is labeled as a “test run only” it would set in motion potential organizational and tax issues. We believe the risk from the proposal outweighs the potential benefits. We are evaluating a plan that will address each element (including the organizational issue), but that process will continue to take time. As that analysis continues, we think patience is warranted to get the full legal and regulatory analysis correct before proceeding further. In light of all that has happened in the web3 sector this year, we believe it is fundamentally necessary for Uniswap DAO to lead the industry on a pathway that shows that DeFi can exist and operate in a legally compliant manner.

On a final note, one other way to potentially avoid many of the risks associated with the fee switch would be to implement a system that accrues fees to UNI token holders who actively “opt-in.” In this scenario, LPs would stake UNI and their LP tokens to receive boosted rewards from the liquidity pools in which they are providing liquidity. This has the added benefit of incentivizing liquidity providing and directly rewarding the parties that actively participate to keep Uniswap running. We recognize there are a number of technical hurdles prior to implementation, including fee claiming, fee management, and multi-chain fee switches, but we think this option should be explored further in parallel to the general fee switch discussion.

We can be reached here on the forums or on Twitter for those with additional questions!


Miles and Porter


Hi Uniswap Community,
Almanak is a web3 simulation platform that enhances decision makers with risk management tooling across DAOs. We have been following the discussion around the fee switch & its testing since the very beginning (thank you @guil-lambert for your efforts) and would like to drop additional comments regarding our most recent observations.


  • We suggest the fee switch test be run with specific metrics to avoid any duality/wrong facts being stated during or after the trial.
  • The current KPI (“trade execution not diminished”) may not fully grasp important levers of the fee switch mechanism. A larger set of metrics, covering trade volume, net liquidity & market share, would allow for a more exhaustive assessment.
  • As a follow-up step, we suggest to consider ** a benchmarking & validation process for the test to further evaluate the sustainability of the fee switch**, regardless of the macro-economic environment, and assure the best possible basis for decision-making.


We would like to suggest a set of meaningful metrics to interpret the results of the fee switch implementation in a correct and digestible way:

  • Trading execution (slippage + fees) is a relevant and important metric, yet does not reflect the impact on the pools and the protocol
    Optimal trading execution is one of the key topics for a majority of trades on DEXes driven by MEV bots and market makers. Both use pools with high liquidity to limit the impact of slippage on their profit margin. Offering the best execution price and highest return will loom more volume to the pools. Yet trading execution is not a tangible metric to track as it only tells the story of executed trades rather than the ones that were not, which equals to lost volume.

  • Tracking pool and market share combined with liquidity flows could be top-line metrics to implement to understand the impact more clearly, supported by bottom-line dimensions such as liquidity retention and shifts
    We agree with the general direction @msilb7 highlighted: not only should the pool volume of each pool tier be reflected but additionally the overall Uniswap v3 market share of the trading pairs. We suggest further refining what specific metrics to use and their respective units. The metric set will highlight the impact of liquidity not being available on the respective Uniswap pools but on other DEXes, which then aggregates more trades and a higher market share. Note that the metrics would have the following units:

    • Pool volume/comparison: MM$, compared against other Uniswap v3 pools of the same token pair prior, and post fee switch.
    • Uniswap Market share of trading pair: %, compared against all other decentralised exchanges offering the trading pair prior, and post fee switch.
    • Net liquidity flow: MM$, difference in liquidity being transferred from and to other DEXes or other venues to and from Uniswap v3 pool undergoing the fee switch experiment.
    • Liquidity shifts: MM$, liquidity being transferred onto other Uniswap v3 pools of the same token pair prior, and post fee switch.
    • Liquidity retention: Median tenure of liquidity position in hours, monitoring the stickiness of liquidity providers of different pools.
  • Benchmarking/Validating the fee switch approach is currently not tackled
    Even though the Uniswap community opted to trial the fee switch on live pools, we support the idea of shedding light on the “what if?” question. Comparing the different notions of challenging macroeconomic environments is not trivial and validating how a fee switch will fare with different constraints is in the community’s interest to not only rely on this test on selected pools. Ongoing research led by the Uniswap community can help to define volume and liquidity capacities to be simulated. The overarching environment can be populated by trained agents on these specific metrics, executing actions when the simulation is running. Actions will either result in trades, deposits of liquidity or respective withdrawals as well as interacting with other exchanges to represent the competitive environment…


  • We propose to use the above group of metrics to be tracked along the experiment for a clear communication and alignment of goals across the community. The variety of metrics covers both the impact of external factors (missing volume on Uniswap transferred to other DEXes) and internal observations (where did liquidity flow). We additionally add the respective units and specifically define what to track and what not to.

  • Introduction of Benchmarking/Validating framework in additional to tracking/testing of the fee switch to validate the current fee switch implementation in simulation environment. This environment represents an additional layer of validation whether or not to implement the fee switch.**


Thanks @Porter.

It would be great to have more clarity on your timeline for “evaluating a plan that will address each element.”

This is my first post on the governance forum, so hello Uniswap community :smiley: . There is a massive gorilla in the room which has not yet been mentioned on this thread, the business license of the v3 core contracts expires on April 1st 2023, which is less than 120 days from today. If the proposal to test the fee switch for 120 days were to pass 8 days from now when the voting happens, ~100 of the test days would be with the BUSL active, and ~20 days of fully open source v3 core.
My proposal is to set the start date of the 120 day test to be January 31st 2023. This test would have 60 days with no other range liquidity alternatives for LP’s to migrate to, and then 60 days with v3 core fully open sourced where there may be a competitive fork that draws LP’s.

Can you please explain what you mean by “actively opt-in”?

Are you referring to LPs going through some sort of KYC process?

1 Like

I think incentivizing LP’s by having to opt in through staking UNI is perhaps not the right direction.

Here is a thought on organization structure:

What if the collected fee’s from the fee switch are claimed by the users who are trading on Uniswap as a gas fee rebate? For example, User A makes a swap, it costs that user 3 dollars in gas. In the act of the swap, a small % of the accumulated (fee switch) fee’s is claimed/directed to the gas fee’s of the swap transaction (and it doesnt have to be 100% of the gas cost, can be 30% etc of the cost for more users). Better yet, if the claimed fee’s were auto swaped into UNI token in the process of rebating to the user. It further decentralises UNI distribution to the user’s of Uniswap.

This organizational structure would not see the protocol gaining revenues (more so of a community pool) since the fee’s would be used as a cost rebate to the user (the user is opting in to paying the tax on the gas rebate vs the protocol)?

This alternative use for the fee switch designates it as a public good to the user’s of the protocol, and benefits LP’s through increased user acqusition/volume.

Hey @will_leas - late January or early February.

Pains me to say it but Avantgarde will be voting No on this iteration.

While I appreciate the decoupling of the “does this change the product” question from the “what are we going to do with the fees” question, I think it’s impossible and ultimately irresponsible to ignore the other potential negative externalities in the name of experimentation.

Ultimately, turning on the fee switch will bring the protocol into the regulatory crosshairs and to do so without a plan for how we’ll answer when the various authorities come around asking questions is folly. Both @Porter’s post and the UF brief touch briefly on potential vectors of liability for various stakeholders and both indicate that work is ongoing to mitigate those liabilities. Let’s wait for the output of that work before moving forward.

This conversation - while it may not actually result in these fees getting turned on this time - has been super valuable in galvanizing the community around the idea that the fee switch should be turned on in some form or fashion. Kudos to @Leighton for getting it started and for the various people and teams who have gone deep into the data to figure out where this experiment should take place.