|Unit||Mil. USD, NSA|
|Adjustments||Not Seasonally Adjusted|
The U.S. Treasury International Capital reporting system is responsible for the regular collection and maintenance of information on international portfolio capital movements and investment positions. Data available from this system include: U.S. transactions with foreigners in long-term securities, U.S. banking claims on & liabilities to foreigners, purchases of U.S. Treasury bonds & notes, and foreign holdings of U.S. securities. Series are annual or monthly.
The source writes:
Surveys of foreign portfolio holdings of U.S. securities are conducted annually and measure foreign holdings as of end-June each year. Complementary surveys of U.S. holdings of foreign securities are conducted annually as of end-December each year.
Long-term debt securities have an original term-to-maturity of over one year. Asset-backed securities are backed by pools of assets, such as pools of residential home mortgages or credit card receivables, which give the security owners claims against the cash flows generated by the underlying assets. Unlike most other debt securities, these securities generally repay both principal and interest on a regular basis, reducing the principal outstanding with each payment cycle.
Information is collected from commercial banks and other depository institutions, bank holding companies, securities brokers and dealers, and nonbanking enterprises in the United States, including the U.S. branches, agencies and subsidiaries of foreign-based banks and business enterprises. The TIC capital movement reports are filed directly with Federal Reserve Banks, who act as fiscal agents for the Treasury in this function. Beginning in late 1998, the Federal Reserve Board of Governors also performs services on behalf of the Treasury in support of this data collection system.
The foreign holder is indicated by the geo code.
The source writes:
It should be noted that in many cases it is not possible to accurately determine the country of residence of the beneficial owner of U.S. securities. Securities are often held in custody in countries other than the beneficial owner's country of residence. Respondents on this survey, in turn, may only know where the securities are held in custody. Thus, excessive foreign holdings may be attributed to countries that are major custodial centers, such as the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Belgium, and Luxembourg.
Although the U.S. Treasury's reports differentiate zero holdings from negligible amounts (e.g., “* designates between $0 and $500,000”), in Data Buffet all such values have been rounded to zero.
Starting in 2002, the survey became annual, with values as of mid-year (June 30). Prior to that it had been conducted every five years since 1974, as follows:
The monthly "Major Foreign Holders" report lists the estimated end-of-month holdings of the top holders (countries and country-aggregates) of U.S. Treasury securities. Monthly from 2000. Countries move in and out of this subset, so expect intermittent lags in the XBFH^^^M.IUSA series.
For the reported "total, of which" row "foreign official institutions" Data Buffet uses geo code I015, which is listed in Mnemonic 411 as "Countries/Jurisdictions (IMF): International institutions".
Some countries are reported intermittently, as they fall into and out of the top ranks. When they are reported, any previous null periods are populated (within the past 12 months) are reported. Sometimes a new country joins the top ranks, e.g., Peru in June 2012.
Series for North Korea (a.k.a. Democratic People's Republic of Korea, DPRK) were terminated in 2005 and 2007.
Iraq and Vietnam fell off the list as of the July 2020 report.
TIC includes monthly, quarterly and annual subsets.
Treasury publishes TIC each month around day 15 (at 16:00 pm ET, previously at 9:00 a.m.). The press release is posted first, with a vertical table containing four months of history. A related CSV file contains full history and revisions, and other delimited text files (s1_global.csv, etc.) contain the full history for specific indicators. Updates to these, and to the web pages with lists of archived past months, may lag by an hour or more.
The annual holdings data (FPIS) are inherently sparse -- that is, not all types of security are held by (or attain the reportable threshhold) all countries for all periods. Hence, individual series may lag the reference date of the dataset as a whole.
Data are revised for up to 24 months after the initial "as of" reporting date.
All 15 FPIS-midyear series for North Korea (XSCFH?A.IPRK) were discontinued in either 2005 and 2007. The country no longer appears in the FPIS annual report tables.
15 August 2018 - In today’s release table, line 26 (“Other [Short-Term] Negotiable Securities and Selected Other Liabilities” [XBLHONNM.IUSA]) shows a jump in June 2018. The main reason for the jump is improved reporting of collateralized loan obligations (CLOs). Accordingly, data for line 26 and for its components lines 27 and 28 [XBLHONVM.IUSA, XBLHONOM.IUSA] before June 2018 are not comparable to data going forward.
Notes as to the groupings of countries. (Republished from the source and augmented with Moody's Analytics geo codes.)
The TIC home page links to reports on securities, banking, derivatives contracts, nonbanking, gross external debt; forms and instructions for data providers; press releases and articles.
Understanding U.S. Cross-Border Securities Data (PDF), from the Federal Reserve Bulletin, 2006.
Questions about the surveys can be directed to Contact TIC.