Russia and the United States have levers to pull in their diplomatic showdown over Ukraine, but the amount of U.S. debt held by Russia won’t be one of them.
For one, Russia owns a fairly modest amount of U.S. Treasuries — and that figure is shrinking. So even if Russia dumped its holdings, it wouldn’t have much of an impact.
Figures released Tuesday by the U.S. Treasury Department show Russia owned $132 billion worth of Treasuries at the end of January, down 5% from December.
That might seem like a lot, but it’s just a little more than 10% of what China or Japan hold — more than $1 trillion each. And it places it just behind tiny Luxembourg, which owns $135 billion.