Notice

Due to a lapse in Congressional Appropriations for fiscal year 2019, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis is closed. This website is not being updated until further notice.

More Information 

News Release

EMBARGOED UNTIL RELEASE AT 8:30 A.M. EDT, Friday, March 30, 2018
BEA 18-16

U.S. International Investment Position, 4th quarter and year 2017

Fourth Quarter 2017

The U.S. net international investment position decreased to -$7,845.8 billion (preliminary) at the end of the fourth quarter from -$7,739.7 billion (revised) at the end of the third quarter, according to statistics released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). The $106.1 billion decrease reflected a $727.2 billion increase in U.S. assets and an $833.3 billion increase in U.S. liabilities (table 1).

U.S. Net International Investment Position

The $106.1 billion decrease in the net investment position reflected net financial transactions of -$52.4 billion and net other changes in position, such as price and exchange-rate changes, of -$53.8 billion (table A).

The net investment position decreased 1.4 percent in the fourth quarter, compared with an increase of 3.3 percent in the third quarter. The net investment position decreased an average of 5.0 percent per quarter from the first quarter of 2011 through the second quarter of 2017.

U.S. assets increased $727.2 billion to $27,632.8 billion at the end of the fourth quarter, mostly reflecting increases in portfolio investment and direct investment assets.

  • Assets excluding financial derivatives increased $809.8 billion to $26,010.4 billion. The increase resulted from other changes in position of $658.8 billion and financial transactions of $151.0 billion (table A). Other changes in position mostly reflected (1) foreign equity price increases that raised the value of portfolio investment and direct investment equity assets and (2) the appreciation of major foreign currencies against the U.S. dollar that raised the value of foreign-currency-denominated assets in dollar terms. Financial transactions mostly reflected net acquisition of portfolio investment debt securities and direct investment equity assets.
  • Financial derivatives decreased $82.6 billion to $1,622.5 billion, mostly in single-currency interest rate contracts and foreign exchange contracts.
Table A. Quarterly Change in the U.S. Net International Investment PositionBillions of dollars, not seasonally adjusted
  Position, 2017:III Change in position in 2017:IV Position, 2017:IV
Total Attributable to:
Financial transactions Other changes in position 1
U.S. net international investment position -7,739.7 -106.1 -52.4 -53.8 -7,845.8
Net position excluding financial derivatives -7,773.5 -100.6 -53.2 -47.5 -7,874.1
Financial derivatives other than reserves, net 33.8 -5.5 0.8 -6.3 28.3
U.S. assets 26,905.6 727.2 (2) (2) 27,632.8
Assets excluding financial derivatives 25,200.5 809.8 151.0 658.8 26,010.4
Financial derivatives other than reserves 1,705.1 -82.6 (2) (2) 1,622.5
U.S. liabilities 34,645.3 833.3 (2) (2) 35,478.6
Liabilities excluding financial derivatives 32,974.0 910.5 204.2 706.3 33,884.4
Financial derivatives other than reserves 1,671.3 -77.1 (2) (2) 1,594.2
1 Disaggregation of other changes in position into price changes, exchange-rate changes, and other changes in volume and valuation is only presented for annual statistics released in June each year.
2 Financial transactions and other changes in financial derivatives positions are available only on a net basis; they are not separately available for U.S. assets and U.S. liabilities.

U.S. liabilities increased $833.3 billion to $35,478.6 billion at the end of the fourth quarter, mostly reflecting increases in portfolio investment and direct investment liabilities.

  • Liabilities excluding financial derivatives increased $910.5 billion to $33,884.4 billion. The increase resulted from other changes in position of $706.3 billion and financial transactions of $204.2 billion (table A). Other changes in position mostly reflected U.S. equity price increases that raised the value of portfolio investment and direct investment equity liabilities. Financial transactions reflected net incurrence of liabilities in all major investment categories.
  • Financial derivatives decreased $77.1 billion to $1,594.2 billion, mostly in single-currency interest rate contracts and foreign exchange contracts.
U.S. Assets and Liabilities Chart

Updates to Statistics

Table B. Updates to Third Quarter 2017 International Investment Position AggregatesBillions of dollars, not seasonally adjusted
  Preliminary estimate Revised estimate
U.S. net international investment position -7,768.7 -7,739.7
U.S. assets 26,854.9 26,905.6
Direct investment at market value 8,580.6 8,595.4
Portfolio investment 11,860.1 11,905.5
Financial derivatives other than reserves 1,705.1 1,705.1
Other investment 4,252.5 4,243.0
Reserve assets 456.6 456.6
U.S. liabilities 34,623.6 34,645.3
Direct investment at market value 8,452.8 8,454.1
Portfolio investment 19,043.2 19,057.9
Financial derivatives other than reserves 1,671.3 1,671.3
Other investment 5,456.2 5,461.9

Year 2017

The U.S. net international investment position increased to -$7,845.8 billion (preliminary) at the end of 2017 from -$8,318.4 billion at the end of 2016. The $472.6 billion increase reflected a $3,783.4 billion increase in U.S. assets and a $3,310.8 billion increase in U.S. liabilities.

U.S. assets increased $3,783.4 billion to $27,632.8 billion at the end of 2017, mostly reflecting increases in portfolio investment and direct investment assets that were partly offset by a decrease in financial derivatives.

  • Assets excluding financial derivatives increased $4,369.9 billion to $26,010.4 billion. The increase resulted from other changes in position of $3,157.5 billion and financial transactions of $1,212.4 billion (table C). Other changes in position mostly reflected (1) foreign equity price increases that raised the value of portfolio investment and direct investment equity assets and (2) the appreciation of major foreign currencies against the U.S. dollar that raised the value of foreign-currency-denominated assets in dollar terms. Financial transactions reflected net acquisition of assets in all major investment categories, except reserve assets.
  • Financial derivatives decreased $586.5 billion to $1,622.5 billion, mostly in single-currency interest rate contracts and foreign exchange contracts.
Table C. Annual Change in the U.S. Net International Investment PositionBillions of dollars
  Position, 2016 Change in position in 2017 Position, 2017
Total Attributable to:
Financial transactions Other changes in position 1
U.S. net international investment position -8,318.4 472.6 -349.2 821.8 -7,845.8
Net position excluding financial derivatives -8,379.7 505.6 -375.6 881.2 -7,874.1
Financial derivatives other than reserves, net 61.3 -33.0 26.4 -59.4 28.3
U.S. assets 23,849.4 3,783.4 (2) (2) 27,632.8
Assets excluding financial derivatives 21,640.5 4,369.9 1,212.4 3,157.5 26,010.4
Financial derivatives other than reserves 2,209.0 -586.5 (2) (2) 1,622.5
U.S. liabilities 32,167.8 3,310.8 (2) (2) 35,478.6
Liabilities excluding financial derivatives 30,020.1 3,864.3 1,587.9 2,276.4 33,884.4
Financial derivatives other than reserves 2,147.7 -553.5 (2) (2) 1,594.2
1Disaggregation of other changes in position into price changes, exchange-rate changes, and other changes in volume and valuation is only presented for annual statistics released in June each year.
2Financial transactions and other changes in financial derivatives positions are available only on a net basis; they are not separately available for U.S. assets and U.S. liabilities.

U.S. liabilities increased $3,310.8 billion to $35,478.6 billion at the end of 2017, mostly reflecting increases in portfolio investment and direct investment liabilities that were partly offset by a decrease in financial derivatives.

  • Liabilities excluding financial derivatives increased $3,864.3 billion to $33,884.4 billion. The increase resulted from other changes in position of $2,276.4 billion and financial transactions of $1,587.9 billion (table C). Other changes in position mostly reflected U.S. equity price increases that raised the value of portfolio investment and direct investment equity liabilities. Financial transactions reflected net incurrence of liabilities in all major investment categories.
  • Financial derivatives decreased $553.5 billion to $1,594.2 billion, mostly in single-currency interest rate contracts and foreign exchange contracts.
Notice of Upcoming Update to the U.S. Net International Investment Position

The annual update of the U.S. net international investment position will be released along with preliminary estimates for the first quarter of 2018 on June 27, 2018. An article previewing the annual update will appear in the May 2018 issue of the Survey of Current Business.

Next release: June 27, 2018, at 8:30 A.M. EDT
U.S. Net International Investment Position, First Quarter 2018, Year 2017, and Annual Update

U.S. Net International Investment Position Release Dates in 2018
Fourth Quarter and Year 2017 March 30
First Quarter 2018, Year 2017, and Annual Update June 27
Second Quarter 2018 September 26
Third Quarter 2018 December 27