China’s $1.5 Trillion Bet

Understanding China’s External Portfolio

May 13, 2009

Report

More on:

China

Financial Markets

United States

Overview

This is an update to the January 2009 Working Paper China’s $1.7 Trillion Bet. Download the original paper [PDF].

China is now by far the United States’ largest creditor. Its treasury portfolio recently surpassed that of Japan’s, and it has long held more agency (Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac) bonds than any other country. Never before has a nation as poor as China provided so much financing to a country as rich as the United States. In this Center for Geoeconomic Studies Working Paper, Brad W. Setser and Arpana Pandey estimate the true scale of China’s U.S. portfolio and examine how the pace of growth and composition of China’s portfolio have evolved over time.

More on:

China

Financial Markets

United States

Explore More on CFR

Russia

A quarter-century after the end of the Cold War, we unexpectedly find ourselves in a second one. The United States and its partners have a large stake in greater Russian restraint while Vladimir Putin remains in power—and in a Russia characterized by other than Putinism after he is gone.

China

Food and Water Security

A historic dry spell has severely affected Cape Town's water supply, and global climate patterns suggest that other cities may face the same fate.