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CSO statistical release, , 11am

Resident Holdings of Foreign Portfolio Securities

31 December 2018

    € million
 EquityBonds and NotesMoney Market InstrumentsTotal
of which:
   United States 388,202315,525131,466835,193
   United Kingdom132,439367,51673,674573,629
   Luxembourg 85,98724,8604,911115,758

Investment in foreign securities rises to €2.7 trillion at the end of 2018

Fig 1 Portfolio Investment by Country
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The value of Irish residents’ holdings of foreign securities at end-December 2018 amounted to €2,745bn, up €56bn on the 2017 level of €2,689bn. The increase is largely accounted for by the increase in bonds and notes assets.

Combined investment in US-issued and UK-issued instruments (€1,409bn) accounted for 51.3% of the total stock, up from 49.2% on 2017.

Other points of note from the end-2018 results are:

  • Overall investment in US securities rose by €72bn, but the composition of that investment changed significantly with equity up €24bn, bonds & notes up €19bn and money market instruments up €29bn – see Table 1. Investment funds accounted for 74% of the US securities total - the corresponding investment by money market funds increased by €12bn to €87bn - see Table 2.
  • Investment in UK securities rose by €13bn to €574bn, cementing its position as the second most popular investment location. France is still at the third place with investment decreasing by €8bn to €167bn.
  • Significant holdings are also shown for Luxembourg (€116bn, up 3.3%), Germany (€106bn, down 7%), Italy (€97bn, down 0.2%), Netherlands (€96bn, up 4.8%) and Japan (€90bn, down 14%).
  • Total investment in investment funds increased by €42bn to €1,767bn – the corresponding total investment in money market funds decreased by €11bn to €348bn - see Table 2.

This release also provides analysis by country of issuer and sector of holder (Table 2). Corresponding data for 2018 are shown including revisions resulting from more recent information. Overall, the data are compatible in form and content with the data being submitted to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as part of Ireland’s on-going participation in the IMF’s world-wide annual Coordinated Portfolio Investment Survey. They are also consistent with the portfolio investment stock statistics published on the 13th September 2019 in the International Accounts Quarter 2 2019 – see Background Notes. More detailed geographical analysis is available on the CSO StatBank.