Foreign Holdings of US Debt Hit New Record

$5.5 trillion in October


Foreign ownership of U.S. Treasury securities rose to a record level in October, a sign that overseas investors remain confident in U.S. debt despite a potential federal budget crisis.

Total foreign holdings of U.S. Treasuries hit $5.5 trillion in October, the Treasury Department said Monday, up 0.1% from September. However, the monthly increase of $6 billion was the weakest since total holdings fell in December 2011.

China, the largest holder of U.S. government debt, increased its holdings slightly to $1.16 trillion. Japan, the second-largest holder, boosted its holdings by a smaller amount to $1.13 trillion. Brazil, the country with the third-largest holdings, increased its total to $255.2 billion.