Who Bought the $5 Trillion Piled on the Monstrous US National Debt in 15 Months?


Wolf Street: The US gross national debt outstanding has ballooned by over $5 trillion since early March 2020, to $28.4 trillion, where it has been stuck since August 1 when the debt-ceiling farce recommenced.

The burning question is who the heck bought these Treasury securities and who is holding them, given that everyone who is buying any of them now is getting crushed by historically steep negative “real” yields, with CPI inflation outrunning even the 30-year Treasury yield by 3.5 percentage points.

“The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.” Proverbs 22:7 NIV

The Treasury Department released its Treasury International Capital data this afternoon. It tracks foreign holdings of Treasury securities by country through June. Now we can piece the holdings together, along with: the Fed’s holdings (per its weekly balance sheet); the banks’ holdings (per the Fed’s bank data); the holdings by US government entities, such as government pension funds (per the Treasury Department’s data); and holdings by other US entities, such as mutual funds and pensions funds (per data from SIFMA). And it’s quite a show.

Huge but fading importance of foreign creditors of the US.

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