Where is America’s Debt? Foreign Held Treasuries – Infographic

America’s collective debt, also called the national debt or the public debt, represents the money that the U.S. government owes to the owners of debt instruments that are issued by the U.S. treasury. There are several types of debt instruments issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. All of these items are collectively called treasuries.

America has always had debt. Since the 18th century, the country has carried a load of debt that has fluctuated with the political and social climate of the day. In 1860, America’s debt was $65 million. The Civil War brought about a major spike in the debt. World War I and World War II also brought about major rises in the debt. The latest American debt numbers have put it at its steepest numbers since the debt level spiked during World War II.

America’s debt, as owed to foreign nations, has been rising steadily over the years. The gross debt in trillions of U.S. dollars was about $10 trillion in 1940. In 1950, it had risen to about $18 trillion. After falling for a few decades, it began rising again in the late 1980s. In 2009, America’s debt was again up to $18 trillion. It is projected to continue to rise over the next few years. By 2011 it is projected to be about $20 trillion. The projected amount of American debt in the next few years equals 100 percent of the U.S. GDP.

Foreign Held Treasury Securities in U.S. Dollars

China holds $798.9 billion in American debt. Japan holds $746.5 billion in U.S. debt. The U.K. holds $230.7 billion of the U.S. debt. Brazil holds $156.2 billion in U.S. debt. Hong Kong has $142.0 billion of the American debt. Russia has $122.5 billion of American debt. Luxemburg holds $90.8 billion of the American debt. Taiwan has $78.7 billion of America’s debt. Switzerland owns $71.5 billion of America’s debt. Germany holds $52.8 billion in American debt.

South Korea has $42.2 billion of the U.S. debt. Canada has $40.8 billion in American debt. Ireland has $38.3 billion in U.S. debt. France has $36.2 billion in U.S. debt. Singapore has $35.2 billion of the U.S. debt. India owns $32.9 billion of the American debt. Turkey owns $30.4 billion of the U.S. debt. Thailand holds $30.1 billion in U.S. debt. Norway holds $24.9 billion in American debt. Mexico holds $20.7 billion of U.S. debt…Read More

Source: VE Visual Economics

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9 Responses

  1. Barry Gumm says:

    And hence the Crash has started

  2. Nicolas says:

    Even Mexico and Thailand own a big chunk of the pie. Don’t blame others. Look inside first.

  3. ajarndonald says:

    Wow! This is really very sad but interesting. I wish I could post the code to my blogger blog. I will share this.

  4. Sandor says:

    Reblogged this on Sandor Benko's Reblog Blog 😉 -> On to FireYourBossProject.com for full blog! and commented:
    Ever wonderes who owns your backside? Have a look.

  5. Sandor says:

    I knew the numbers on China, but was surprised to see Japan in close 2nd. I guess it helps to know who owns our backside.

  6. cdogzilla says:

    Wow. So looking at this, it’s hard not to conclude we became irresponsibly berserk spender/lenders under Reagan, and only two Democratic administrations have even come close to decreasing the rate of increase. For all the noise the GOP makes about fiscal responsibility and reducing the debt, there’s no evidence they have ever had any intention of doing anything but bankrupting the government and blaming someone else for the mess they make so they can continue their destructive, wanton spending (on illegal, immoral wars and corporate welfare) while putting all the burden for that spending on the working class. *lowers welder’s mask, dons flame-retardant suit, braces for right wingers to come to the defense of Saints Reagan, Bush I, & Bush II*

  7. The one thing that this infographic leaves out is how much debt is owed by Americans (i.e., US banks & investment firms). Although China is the largest foreign investor, it’s my understanding that US entities own more of the debt than China. Good infographic still.

  8. 12jph says:

    Very detailed content!

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