Share This Page

Report on U.S. Portfolio Holdings of Foreign Securities at End-Year 2020

October 29, 2021 / Source: Treasury

WASHINGTON – The findings from the annual survey of U.S. portfolio holdings of foreign securities at year-end 2020 were released today and posted on the Treasury web site at https://home.treasury.gov/data/treasury-international-capital-tic-system/tic-forms-instructions/us-claims-on-foreigners-from-holdings-of-foreign-securities

The survey was undertaken jointly by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. 

A complementary survey measuring foreign holdings of U.S. securities is also conducted annually.  Data from the most recent such survey, which reports on securities held at end-June 2021, are currently being processed.  Preliminary results are expected to be reported on February 28, 2022.

Overall Results

This survey measured the value of U.S. portfolio holdings of foreign securities at year-end 2020 as approximately $14.4 trillion, with $10.6 trillion held in foreign equity, $3.4 trillion held in foreign long-term debt securities (original term-to-maturity in excess of one year), and $0.4 trillion held in foreign short-term debt securities.  The previous such survey, conducted as of year-end 2019, measured U.S. holdings of approximately $13.1 trillion, with $9.5 trillion held in foreign equity, $3.1 trillion held in foreign long-term debt securities, and $0.5 trillion held in foreign short-term debt securities.  The increase in 2020 was mainly in equity (see Table 1).

U.S. portfolio holdings of foreign securities by country at the end of 2020 were the largest for the Cayman Islands ($2.6 trillion), followed by the United Kingdom ($1.4 trillion), Japan ($1.3 trillion), and Canada ($1.2 trillion) (see Table 2).  These four countries attracted 45 percent of total U.S. portfolio investment, versus 44 percent the previous year.
The surveys are part of an internationally coordinated effort under the auspices of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to improve the measurement of portfolio asset holdings.

The full annual report can be found here.

Table 1.  U.S. holdings of foreign securities, by type of security, as of survey dates [1]

(Billions of dollars)

Type of Security

December 31, 2019

December 31, 2020

 

 

 

Long-term Securities

12,617

13,988

            Equity

9,478

10,615

            Long-term debt

3,139

3,373

Short-term debt securities

470

399

Total

13,087

14,387

 

U.S. Portfolio Investment by Country

Table 2.  Market value of U.S. portfolio holdings of foreign securities, by country and type of security, for countries attracting the most U.S. investment, as of December 31, 2020 [1]

(Billions of dollars)

Country or category

Total

Equity

Debt

Total

Long-term

Short-term

Cayman Islands

2,565

2,027

539

531

7

United Kingdom

1,395

919

476

435

40

Japan

1,296

1,013

283

182

102

Canada

1,168

683

484

412

72

France

698

479

220

187

32

Ireland

698

608

90

80

10

Switzerland

632

590

42

41

1

Netherlands

628

423

205

196

9

Germany

535

422

113

93

20

Australia

378

227

151

126

25

Taiwan

304

304

*

*

0

Korea, South

300

277

23

22

1

China, Mainland [2]

287

251

35

34

2

Bermuda

283

240

44

44

*

India

234

223

11

11

*

Luxembourg

198

131

67

63

5

Sweden

196

155

42

28

14

Brazil

168

144

24

23

*

Hong Kong

166

158

8

7

1

Spain

163

113

49

47

2

Rest of world

2,094

1,228

866

811

56

Total

14,387

10,615

3,772

3,373

399

*     Greater than zero but less than $500 million.

Items may not sum to totals due to rounding.

[1] The stock of foreign securities for December 31, 2020, reported in this survey may not, for a number of reasons, correspond to the stock of foreign securities on December 31, 2019, plus cumulative flows reported in Treasury’s transactions reporting system.  An analysis of the relationship between the stock and flow data is available in Exhibit 4 and the associated text of “U.S. Portfolio Holdings of Foreign Securities as of End-December 2020.”

[2] China, Hong Kong, and Macau are all reported separately.