China, Japan Lead Way With Trillion Dollar Plus US Debt Holdings

US Debt Countries - FlagsThe United States currently has a total debt load of a little under $16.75 trillion.

Of this figure, roughly $11.9 trillion is in the form of public debt, while the remainder (about $4.85 trillion) is in the form of intragovermental holdings.

"Public debt" is money that is owed to pension funds, foreign governments, foreign investors, American investors, etc. "Intragovernmental holdings" is money that the US government owes to programs such as the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund and the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund.

Of the $11.9 trillion in public debt that the United States owes, over $5.6 trillion is owned by foreign holders. This number increases with each passing month - over the past year, foreigners have increased their holdings of US debt by roughly $600 billion.

China ($1.264 trillion) and Japan ($1.115 trillion) lead the way with trillion dollar plus holdings of US Treasury securities. You probably already knew this.

What you may not have known, however, is the staggering amounts of US debt that countries such as Brazil, Russia and Ireland own.

Let's take a look at the largest holders of US debt as of January, 2013:

China, $1.264 trillion
Japan, $1.115 trillion
Oil Exporters, $262.0 billion
Brazil, $253.4 billion
Other, $245.5 billion
Caribbean Banking Centers, $236.9 billion
Taiwan, $196.6 billion
Switzerland, $192.7 billion
Russia, $162.9 billion
Luxembourg, $144.7 billion
Belgium, $143.5 billion
Hong Kong, $142.9 billion
United Kingdom, $135.7 billion
Ireland, $107.4 billion
Singapore, $98.8 billion
Norway, $76.1 billion
Canada, $67.2 billion
German, $65.4 billion
Mexico, $62.4 billion
Thailand, $62.0 billion
India, $58.8 billion
Turkey, $57.1 billion
France, $56.4 billion
Korea, $46.8 billion
Philippines, $38.3 billion
Poland, $33.2 billion
Chile, $32.8 billion
Netherlands, $32.8 billion
Columbia, $30.3 billion
Sweden, $28.8 billion
Spain, $27.5 billion
Australia, $27.2 billion
Italy, $27.0 billion
Israel, $21.1 billion
Malaysia, $19.4 billion
Peru, $15.4 billion
Denmark, $14.0 billion
South Africa, $13.4 billion

Filed under: General Knowledge

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