The long-anticipated Shanghai upgrade, which was released on April 12, has allowed validators to withdraw their staked tokens. This has led to a surge in interest in Ethereum staking, with users depositing more than 4.4 million ETH since the upgrade.

As of May 23, the Ethereum deposit contract balance stands at 22.6 million ETH or $41.1 billion. This represents a sharp increase from the 18.2 million ETH or $34.7 billion that was staked before the Shanghai upgrade.

The surge in interest in Ethereum staking is likely due to a number of factors, including the high staking rewards and the security of the Ethereum network.

Ethereum validators earn an annualized rate of return of 8.66%, which is significantly higher than the interest rates offered by traditional banks. Additionally, the Ethereum network is one of the most secure blockchain networks in the world, which makes it a safe place to store digital assets.

The Shanghai upgrade is a major step forward for Ethereum and is likely to further boost the adoption of the network.

As more and more people stake their ETH, the Ethereum network will become more decentralized and secure. This will make Ethereum a more attractive platform for developers and users, which could lead to further growth in the Ethereum ecosystem.