Who's Holding U.S. Government Debt?
One tricky question in connection with the American relationship with China was once captured by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton who pondered: “How do you deal toughly with your banker?” And indeed, as the below infographic based on data published by the U.S. Treasury suggests, China has some financial leverage over the United States, by being the single biggest owner of U.S. treasury securities. China has even increased its leverage in a year-over-year comparison.
Who wouldn't try to acquire a little more security (or securities, for this matter) faced with repeated highly critical comments by presidential candidate and president Trump. It seems the Chinese leadership, unlike many others, took Trump by his word and acted accordingly. At a campaign event in 2015 Trump once said: “I beat the people from China, I win against China. You can win against China if you’re smart.”
This infographic shows major foreign holders of U.S. treasury securities (billions of dollars)