GM Volt Forum banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,410 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Following a Freedom-of-Information Act request filed by Bloomberg News, the Treasury Department yesterday released a breakdown of Saudi Arabia's holdings of U.S. debt for the first time since 1974. According to the data, the Gulf oil producer held $116.8 billion of such instruments as of March, a total that to some extent leads to more questions than answers. Saudi Arabia has $587 billion of foreign reserves and the U.S. debt holdings only represent 20 percent of that, far below the two-thirds level international central banks typically hold in dollar-denominated assets. Also, hanging over this is the Saudi threat, reported by the New York Times in April, to sell $750 billion in dollar assets should Congress pass a bill allowing the monarchy to be held liable for the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
260 Posts
What % of the total US debt is that, though? $100B doesn't seem like all that much, when our debt is in the trillions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,439 Posts
Maybe they prefer to invest elsewhere for political reasons. Or maybe they don't have the reserves some think.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,416 Posts
Debt Held by the Public: Foreign Investors

Thirty-four percent of the U.S. debt is held internationally by foreign investors (i.e. foreign governments, foreign institutions, and individual people in foreign countries) who buy our Treasury bonds as investments. The graph below ranks foreign investors' holdings by country.




Debt Held by Federal Accounts

Debt held by federal accounts is not considered public debt - it is the amount of money that the Treasury has borrowed from itself. That may sound funny, but it means that the Treasury borrows surplus money from one trust fund and gives it to another trust fund. For example, the Treasury might borrow money from Social Security to finance current government spending in another area. At a later date, the government must pay that borrowed money back. Federal accounts currently hold 28% of the national debt.

(Note: The Federal Reserve is not counted as "debt held by federal accounts" because the Federal Reserve is considered independent of the federal government).
Most people don't know that the single largest "federal debt" holder is the social security fund. U.S. state and local governments hold a lot too.

The Federal Reserve is the largest "public debt" holder.

The amount held by Saudi Arabia pales in comparison to the amount of interest paid on this debt annually.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
921 Posts
That's better, the China and Japan number jive with your bar chart. Still, the single biggest holder of our debt is ourselves, not China, as so many talking heads would have us believe...
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top