In response to:

Who Really Owns the U.S. National Debt?

scott s. Wrote: Jan 21, 2013 2:40 PM
When Abraham Lincoln was president, the Treasury did issue "United States Notes" which were non-interest bearing. But also Lincoln passed the National Banking Act which created the Office of Comptroller of the Currency and allowed national banks to issue National Bank Notes (banks were required to hold a certain amount of treasury debt for the privilege). An excise tax was placed on bank notes issued by state-chartered banks, effectively ending them.

Today, we're taking a preliminary look at just who owns all the debt issued by the U.S. federal government through 30 September 2012 - the end of the U.S. government's fiscal year. Our chart below visualizes what we found.

The information presented in our chart above is preliminary, as the U.S. Treasury typically revises its foreign entity debt ownership data in March of each year.

Overall, U.S. entities own just 65.8% of all debt issued by the U.S. federal government. Ranking the major U.S. entities from low to high, we find that: