No. 363 - Foreign holders of Italian government debt securities: new evidence

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by Valerio Della Corte and Stefano Federico October 2016

Drawing on data from the Eurosystem’s recent Securities Holdings Statistics (SHS) and the IMF’s Coordinated Portfolio Investment Survey (CPIS), the paper provides a detailed breakdown of foreign holders of Italian government securities by sector and geographical area.

We estimate that euro-area investors held more than 60 per cent of the Italian general government securities held by non-residents at the end of 2015; the sector in the euro area holding the largest share was ‘other financial intermediaries’ (predominantly non-money market funds), followed by banks and the insurance industry and pension funds.

We also show that foreign demand for Italian government debt was mainly driven by euro-area countries in 2014, while in 2015 it mostly reflected purchases made by investors outside the euro area.