The problem, of course, with this data is that it is stale and very
backward looking. For a much better, and up to date, indicator of what
foreigners are doing with US Treasurys in near real time, the bond
watchers keep track of a less known data series, called "Treasury Securities Held in Custody for Foreign Official and International Accounts"
which as the name implies shows what foreigners are doing with their
Treasury securities held in custody by the Fed on a weekly basis. So
here it goes: in the just reported latest data, for the week ended March 12, Treasurys held in custody by the Fed dropped to $2.855 trillion: a drop of $104.5 billion. This was the biggest drop of Treasurys held by the Fed on record, i.e., foreigners were really busy selling.
This brings the total Treasury holdings in custody at the Fed to
levels not seen since December 2012, a period during which the Fed alone
has monetized well over $1 trillion in US paper.
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