Government Bonds and Their Investors: What are the Facts and Do They Matter?

30 Pages Posted: 21 Jul 2016

See all articles by Jochen R. Andritzky

Jochen R. Andritzky

German Council of Economic Experts; International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Date Written: June 1, 2012


This paper introduces a new dataset on the composition of the investor base for government securities in the G20 advanced economies and the euro area. During the last decades, investors from abroad have increased their presence in government bond markets. The financial crisis broke this trend. Domestic financial institutions allocated a larger share of government securities in their portfolios, as Japan has done since its crisis in the 1990s. Increases in the share held by institutional investors or non-residents by 10 percentage points are associated with a reduction in yields by about 25 or 40 basis points, respectively. The data show a varied lead-lag relationship between bond yields and investor holdings. Portfolio balance estimates suggest that a change in statutory or regulatory holdings of government securities to the tune of 10 percent of the outstanding stock causes expected returns to decline by 7 to 25 basis points.

Keywords: public debt, government bonds, investor base, advanced market economies

JEL Classification: G11, H63

Suggested Citation

Andritzky, Jochen, Government Bonds and Their Investors: What are the Facts and Do They Matter? (June 1, 2012). Available at SSRN: or

Jochen Andritzky (Contact Author)

German Council of Economic Experts ( email )

Federal Statistical Office
Gustav-Stresemann-Ring 11
Wiesbaden, Hessen 65180

International Monetary Fund (IMF) ( email )

700 19th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20431
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics