Foreign holdings of US Treasury debt increased to record $5.62 trillion in January

WASHINGTON – Foreign demand for U.S. Treasury securities rose to a record level in January, providing evidence that international investors remain confident in U.S. debt despite on-going budget battles in Washington.

The Treasury Department said Friday that foreign holdings of U.S. Treasury securities rose in January for a 13th straight month to a record $5.62 trillion, up 0.8 per cent from December. China, the top foreign holder, increased its holdings 3.6 per cent to $1.26 trillion. Japan, the second largest holder, boosted its investment 0.4 per cent to $1.12 trillion.

Demand kept rising as Congress and President Barack Obama kept wrangling over various budget issues. Congress did agree to temporarily lift the government’s borrowing limit but no deal was reached on a plan to avert automatic spending cuts from going into effect on March 1.