Economics, U.S. Economy

Quiz: What percent of privately held US Treasury debt is owed to foreigners?

Image Credit: shutterstock

Image Credit: shutterstock

The US government owes $10 trillion to third-party investors. This is the total of “privately held” debt as reported by the US Treasury. “Private” in this sense includes foreign governments. It means the $16.7 trillion in Treasury securities formally outstanding less the $6.7 trillion held by various parts of the government itself, such as the Federal Reserve. These are a consolidating elimination for the government viewed as a whole.

Of the $10 trillion the government owes to someone else, what percent is due to foreigners?

The answer: 56%. What was your estimate?

As of June, 2013, $5.6 trillion of the $10 trillion the government has borrowed from investors was owed to foreigners, and $4.4 trillion or 44% to US entities.

Whatever else may be said about these facts, the nostrum “we owe it to ourselves” does not apply.

2 thoughts on “Quiz: What percent of privately held US Treasury debt is owed to foreigners?

  1. we dont “owe” it to anyone…the function of Treasury script in the world economy is that of money; if we reduced our outstanding debt to any degree it would be severely contractionary and likely precipitate a global recession…

    • YOU ARE DRINKING THE KOOL-AID OF THE BALONEY BULLSHI**ERS………..JUST LIKE RAISING THE DEBT LIMIT DOESN’T RESULT IN HIGHER DEBT.

      DEBASING MONEY IS THE OPPOSITE OF BEING STABLE MONEY

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