Ethereum’s next major software upgrade, codenamed Constantinople, is scheduled to take place around April 12. This upgrade is expected to make Ethereum’s biggest commercial highway more attractive to investors and developers alike.
Shanghai, a new platform that will allow people who pledged their Ether tokens to order transactions on the Ethereum blockchain to withdraw them, is set to launch on September 13th. Currently, some 17.5 million of such so-called staked Ether, worth about $29 billion at current prices, can’t be accessed on the network, although the coins do earn their owners a yield. Ethereum software developers have been working on Shanghai for months, and have finally been able to set the date after deploying a final software test earlier this week.
As Shanghai prepares to launch, many investors are withdrawing their coins from the network to ensure their safety. However, because of the high demand for withdrawals, the process could take weeks or even months. For those who don’t want to wait, platforms like Lido offer some flexibility with their coins.
Henry Elder, head of decentralized finance at Wave Digital Assets, believes that we will not see a surge of withdrawals to sell the underlying Ether. “Stakers, especially the earliest and most illiquid ones, are generally the most committed participants in the Ethereum ecosystem,” he said.
However, the launch of Shanghai will give investors choosing to stake their Ether more flexibility. This could potentially make Ether a more attractive investment.
I believe that there could be some short-term disruption in ETH prices as the market tries to decipher the withdrawal data, but ultimately this is a positive catalyst. This de-risks ETH by allowing withdrawals.