China Added 1.95% To Their Holdings in May
The US Department of the Treasury is out with their most recent "Major Foreign Holders of Treasury Securities" report, which is current up until the end of May.
Foreign holdings of US debt dropped to $5.6784 trillion in the month of May, down from $5.7063 trillion the month before. The total is still up substantially from 12 months ago, when foreign holders held $5.2677 trillion worth of US debt.
Of the $16.7 trillion or so in total debt that the United States currently reports owing, $11.925 trillion is in the form of "public debt" (money that is owed to investors, hedge funds, foreign governments, etc), while the remainder is in the form of "intragovernmental holdings", which is money that the government owes to programs such as Social Security.
So, of the nearly $12 trillion in public debt that the United States currently owes, roughly 47% is held by foreign holders.
Here are the top foreign holders of US debt as of May/2013:
1. China, Mainland, $1315.9 billion dollars
2. Japan, $1111.0 billion dollars
3. Oil Exporters*, $266.3 billion dollars
4. Brazil, $255.5 billion dollars
5. Carib Bnkng Ctrs**, $253.2 billion dollars
6. All Other, $218.9 billion dollars
7. Taiwan, $189.4 billion dollars
8. Switzerland, $187.0 billion dollars
9. Belgium, $171.0 billion dollars
10. United Kingdom, $155.2 billion dollars
*Includes oil exporting countries such as Saudi Arabia and Iran
**includes countries such as Bermuda and the Cayman Islands
China has seen their holdings of US debt increase by over 13% over the past year, while Japan has increased their position by just 0.34%.
Source: Largest Foreign Holdings of US Debt
Filed under: General Knowledge