The TRUTH About Who Really Owns All Of America’s Debt

20.07.2011

If you ever try comparing the debt situation in the US and Japan, someone will invariably say: Well, Japan can afford a lot more debt because it’s all domestically owned, whereas US debt is owned by the Chinese.

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It turns out this isn’t really true, though unfortunately this destructive myth continues to dominate political/economic debates.

Yes, China holds a lot, but they’re not dominant, and when you add it up, most debt is actually domestically held, just like in Japan.

Hong Kong

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $121.9 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 0.9%

Caribbean Banking Centers

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $148.3 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 1%

The Bahamas, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Netherlands Antilles and Panama, and British Virgin Islands all function as offshore financial centers. Of course, they invest in Treasury Securities as well.

Taiwan

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $153.4 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 1.1%

Brazil

Total Holdings of Treasuries: $211.4 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 1.5%

Oil Exporting Countries

Total holdings of Treasuries: $229.8 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 1.6%

Oil exporters include Ecuador, Venezuela, Indonesia, Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Algeria, Gabon, Libya, and Nigeria.

Mutual Funds

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $300.5 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 2%

Commercial Banks

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $301.8 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 2.1%

State, Local, and Federal Retirement Funds

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $320.9 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 2.2%

Money Market Mutual Funds

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $337.7 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 2.4%

United Kingdom

Total Holdings of Treasuries: $346.5 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 2.4%

Private Pension Funds

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $504.7 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 3.5%

State and Local Governments

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $506.1 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 3.5%

Japan

Total Holdings of Treasuries: $912.4 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 6.4%

US Households

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $959.4 billion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 6.6%

The ‚Household Sector‘ does include hedge funds, by the way.

China

Total Holdings of Treasuries: $1.16 trillion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 8%

The Federal Reserve

The Treasury owes the Fed $1.63 trillion in Treasuries, much of which were bought for the Quantitative Easing programs.

That’s 11.3% of US debt, much more than China.

Social Security Trust Fund

Total Holdings of US Treasuries: $2.67 trillion

Percent of US Debt that they own: 19%

The Old-Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) and Disability Insurance (DI) Trust Funds invest exclusively in special issue bonds that are only available to the Social Security trust fund.  These are not publicly traded securities, but they still constitute a huge amount of debt.

In all, the Treasury owes foreigners and foreign governments $4.514 trillion dollars

But Americans own most of their own country’s $14,342,909,569,328.74 of debt.

http://www.businessinsider.com/who-owns-us-debt-2011-7?utm_source=Triggermail&utm_medium=email&utm_term=Business+Insider+Select&utm_campaign=BI_Select_072011#

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