IRELAND has emerged as America’s fourth biggest creditor, new figures from the US Government show.
Ireland follows the likes of China, Japan and the Cayman Islands after the US Treasury Department revised the way it reports the figures.
Investors in Ireland owned $264.3bn (€233.6bn) of Treasuries at the end of March, figures obtained by the Bloomberg News Agency through Freedom of Information show.
China is the main holder with a $1.24 trillion stake, it is followed by Japan with $1.14 trillion while the Cayman Islands hold $265bn.
The holdings are bigger than the Irish economy which is worth about $230bn.
A possible explanation is the large number of fund managers operating out of Ireland, including the IFSC as well as the number of multinationals here.
“It’s probably linked to offshore mutual funds administered here or offshore-retained earnings of US multinationals,” Owen Callan, fixed income analyst at Cantor FitzGerald told Bloomberg.
Figures from the American Chamber of Commerce show that 700 US firms are domiciled here.
And of the $1.62 trillion held by global funds administered here, $337bn is in Government bonds, including Treasuries, according to Bank of Ireland.
“We recently undertook a thorough data and legal analysis to determine if we could report data in a more comprehensive and transparent fashion,” said Whitney Smith, a spokeswoman for the Treasury Department added. “We concluded that it was consistent with transparency and the law to disclose the data in a disaggregated fashion.”
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