DUBAI — Saudi Arabia’s US Treasury holdings fell to a more than six-year low in June as the kingdom shifts its attention toward higher-risk assets. Other countries with large US Treasury holdings have also been selling off more and more of them, in a signal that they are taking steps to diversify from the reigning American dollar.
Saudi Arabia — the largest Middle East holder of US government debt — sold more than $3 billion of its shares in June. This brought down Riyadh's total holdings to $108.1 billion, the lowest since December 2016, according to US government data compiled by Bloomberg on Wednesday.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) sold about $4 billion in Treasuries in June, bringing down the stockpile of the second-largest Middle East holder to $65.2 billion.
The trend is in line with Arab Gulf states’ plans to shift their investments to higher-risk and higher-return avenues, including projects to diversify away from oil dependence and domestic initiatives to encourage foreign direct investment.