Ethereum (ETH)-focused blockchain technology firm, ConsenSys, has published a report looking at the staking and custody preferences of ETH holders.

The report finds that two-thirds of Ethereum investors plan to stake their coins once the first phase of ETH 2.0’s roll-out is completed.

Interestingly, ETH holders who plan to run their own validator nodes are expecting to receive lower annualized rewards than those who intend to stake through a third-party provider.

Staking preferences indicate counterparty risk thresholds

Of the 287 survey respondents, the largest segment stated that they plan to use a third-party provider to stake with 33.1% of participants. The segment was found to “exhibit the relatively highest ratio of storage of ETH on an exchange,”. They also self-reported a base understanding of ETH 2.0 economics. 

Despite planning to relinquish a portion of their staking rewards to third-party providers, the demographic anticipates an average annual return of 7.6%. Respondents who plan to operate their own nodes on the other hand expect yearly rewards of 5.8%.

Participants planning to operate their own nodes were found to “hold the relatively largest amount of ETH” and reported having the strongest understanding of ETH’s economics. These respondents were also found to store the majority of their ETH on hardware wallets.

Those who won’t stake lack resources

Only 2.8% of survey respondents indicated that they definitely are not planning on staking their ETH, citing a lack of holdings as their primary reason. Most of these respondents store their assets in non-custodial wallets, and self-identified as having the lowest understanding of the economics underpinning ETH 2.0.

14.6% of respondents fell into the undecided camp, citing “a desire to wait and see” as the primary basis for their caution. The undecided respondents have the highest expectations for staking rewards — anticipating returns of 9.4% annually.

The remaining 16.7% of respondents only provided a partial response.

Most nodes will stake 50% or more of their holdings

42.5% of respondents planning to run their own nodes plan to stake between 50% and 100% of their ETH holdings.

One in five participants indicated that they will stake between 91% and 100% of their ETH portfolio — comprising the largest segment of respondents when looking at brackets of ten percent. The second-largest bracket was investors planning to staked between 21% and 30% of their ETH, with 14.9%.

35.1% stated that they will stake less than half of their ETH, leaving 7.4% who did not provide a figure.

Over one-quarter of survey’s participants indicated that they do not hold any Bitcoin (BTC).