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  • Writer's pictureBy The Financial District

Foreign Buying Of U.S. Treasuries Surged In March 2023

Foreign buying of US Treasuries in March rose to its highest level in more than two years, data from the Treasury Department showed, as investors snapped safe-haven government debt in the wake of banking stress during the month, Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss reported for Reuters.

Photo Insert: Holdings of US Treasuries rose to $7.573 trillion in March, up roughly $230 billion from $7.343 trillion in the previous month.

Holdings of US Treasuries rose to $7.573 trillion in March, up roughly $230 billion from $7.343 trillion in the previous month.

The accumulation of Treasuries in March was the biggest since June 2021, said Gennadiy Goldberg of TD Securities in New York. "The month (March) was significant because it was the time when there was banking sector volatility. The most interesting thing was the sheer amount of buying of Treasuries," Goldberg said.

"Investors were de-risking at the time because of the banking stress. There were lots of buying by China, lots of buying by Japan. Buying by the UK, or through the UK, was also interesting, which suggests buying by hedge funds."

US equities also saw foreign buying as well, with inflows of $36.1 billion, from net selling of $16.2 billion in February and outflows of $27.5 billion in January.

All the news: Business man in suit and tie smiling and reading a newspaper near the financial district.

US residents also raised their holdings of long-term foreign securities, with net purchases of $22.8 billion, compared with net selling of $8.3 billion in February. Overall, net foreign purchases of long-term securities are estimated to have been $133.3 billion in March, up sharply from February's inflows of $56.6 billion, data showed.

US regional banks remain at the center of the financial turmoil with the collapses of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank in March that saw deposits flee these institutions. First Republic Bank failed as well and was bought by JP Morgan Chase earlier this month.

Market & economy: Market economist in suit and tie reading reports and analysing charts in the office located in the financial district.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury yield started March at 3.996%, falling 50 basis points to 3.49% by the end of the month. US 10-year yields hit a 15-month high of 4.338% in October last year.

Japan remains the largest non-U.S. holder of Treasuries with $1.087 trillion, up from $1.082 trillion in February. Japan, however, had been selling Treasuries for most of 2022 to help boost a weak yen.

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