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 Report on Foreign Holdings of U.S. Securities at End - June 2012


4/30/2013

WASHINGTON - The final results from the annual survey of foreign portfolio holdings of U.S. securities at the end of June 2012 were released today on the Treasury website at http://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/tic/Pages/fpis.aspx.  The survey was undertaken jointly by Treasury, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.  The next survey will cover holdings at the end of June 2013; preliminary data are expected to be released by February 28, 2014.

Complementary surveys measuring U.S. holdings of foreign securities are also carried out annually.  Data from the most recent survey, reporting on securities held at year-end 2012, are currently being processed.  Preliminary results are expected to be reported by August 30, 2013.
Overall Results

The survey measured the value of foreign portfolio holdings of U.S. securities as of June 30, 2012, to be $13,261 billion, with $4,237 billion held in U.S. equities, $8,213 billion in U.S. long-term debt securities [note 1] (of which $1,121 billion are holdings of asset-backed securities (ABS) [note 2] and $7,092 billion are holdings of non-ABS securities), and $811 billion held in U.S. short-term debt securities.  The previous survey, conducted as of June 30, 2011, measured the value of total foreign holdings of U.S. securities at $12,440 billion, with holdings of $3,830 billion in U.S. equities, $7,731 billion in U.S. long-term debt securities, and $878 billion in U.S. short-term debt securities (see Table A). 

Revisions to the Major Foreign Holders of Treasury Securities Table

A revised table on Major Foreign Holders of Treasury Securities was also released (at http://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/tic/Pages/ticsec2.aspx, on line 1 of Part A).  Since January of 2012, data on foreign holdings of Treasury securities have been collected monthly instead of annually and have been included in the Major Foreign Holders table.  The new data have improved the accuracy of country attribution for foreign holdings of Treasury securities by removing the “transactions bias” in the monthly estimates that, before 2012, were based solely on monthly transactions data (see TIC FAQ #7 at: http://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/faqs/Treasury-International-Capital/Pages/tic-faqs.aspx#q7).  In past years, the accumulated monthly transactions bias was often large and often resulted in some sizable reallocations of holdings across countries when the data from the comprehensive annual June survey were released the following February.  In the new Major Foreign Holders of Treasury Securities Table being released with this announcement, the revisions are minor. [note 3]

 

[note 1]  Long-term debt securities have an original term-to-maturity of over one year.
[note 2]  Asset-backed securities are backed by pools of assets, such as pools of residential home mortgages or credit card receivables, which give the security owners claims against the cash flows generated by the underlying assets.  Unlike most other debt securities, these securities generally repay both principal and interest on a regular basis, reducing the principal outstanding with each payment cycle.
[note 3]  Data on holdings of long-term securities, as well as the table on Major Foreign Holders of Treasury Securities, reflect foreign holdings of U.S. securities collected primarily on the basis of custodial data.  These data help provide a window into foreign ownership of U.S. securities, but they cannot attribute holdings of U.S. securities with complete accuracy.  For example, if a U.S. Treasury security purchased by a foreign resident is held in a custodial account in a third country, the true ownership of the security will not be reflected in the data.  The custodial data will also not properly attribute U.S. Treasury securities managed by foreign private portfolio managers who invest on behalf of residents of other countries.  In addition, foreign countries may hold dollars and other U.S. assets that are not captured in the TIC data.  For these reasons, it is difficult to draw precise conclusions from TIC data about changes in the foreign holdings of U.S. financial assets by individual countries.

 

 Press Release TIC Survey June 2012.pdfPress Release TIC Survey June 2012.pdf

Table A.  Foreign holdings of U.S. securities,
by type of security, as of selected survey dates
(Billions of dollars)

June 30, 2011

June 30, 2012

Long-term securities

11,561

12,451

Equities

3,830

4,237

Long-term debt

7,731

8,213

Asset-backed

1,140

1,122

Other

6,591

7,092

Short-term debt securities

878

811

Total

12,440

13,261

Of which: Official

4,847

5,149


Table B. Foreign holdings of U.S. securities, by country and type of security, for the major investing countries into the U.S., as of June 30, 2012
(Billions of dollars)

Country or category

Total

Equities

Long-term debt

Short-term debt

ABS

Other

Japan

1,835

314

200

1,259

63

China, mainland [i]

1,592

221

182

1,180

9

Cayman Islands

1,031

516

140

291

83

United Kingdom

1,008

495

39

451

22

Luxembourg

837

292

61

413

72

Canada

635

471

17

131

15

Switzerland

566

263

22

255

26

Middle East oil-exporters [ii]

489

226

10

161

91

Ireland

453

108

50

190

104

Belgium

447

22

29

386

11

Hong Kong

306

47

95

124

40

Bermuda

300

68

47

162

22

Taiwan

286

18

42

225

2

Brazil

252

4

*

239

9

Netherlands

251

151

27

70

3

Singapore

241

106

4

122

9

Germany

227

79

30

112

6

France

225

120

8

85

13

Norway

213

124

3

85

*

Russia

165

*

*

159

5

Australia

161

112

4

38

7

Korea, South

148

24

46

73

5

British Virgin Islands

131

84

7

27

12

Mexico

122

23

5

83

11

Sweden

112

70

1

40

1

Country Unknown

89

*

1

87

*

Rest of world

1,140

277

51

642

170

Total

13,261

4,237

1,122

7,092

811

of which: Foreign Official

5,149

630

380

3,762

377

* Greater than zero but less than $500 million.
i.  Excludes Hong Kong and Macau, which are reported separately.
ii.  Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.
Note:  Components may not sum to totals because of rounding.

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