In those two months, Russia sold a whopping $81 billion in Treasurys, a liquidation flow that was likely responsible for much if not all the blow out in rates over the period.
In 2010, Russia was among the top 10 holders of US Treasuries at $176.3 billion. With its holdings falling to $14.9 billion in May, the country is now below the $30 billion threshold for inclusion on the Treasury Department’s monthly report of major holders. On Tuesday, the Treasury released a list of 33 countries which includes the biggest holder China to the smallest Chile. Russia is no longer on the list.
However, that left two questions - why was Russia dumping USTs and what will do with all the funds it garnered from liquidating US debt instruments?
The head of the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) Elvira Nabiullina explained that the slashing of the holdings was result of the systematic assessment of all kinds of risks, including financial, economic and geopolitical.
Meanwhile, Russia’s gold holdings have been steadily increasing - for 39 straight months - bringing its share of the precious metal to its highest level in nearly two decades.