The international investment position

Trade balance is a flow concept because it measures the economic activities of a country over a 1-year period. The international investment position is a stock concept because it summarizes a country's assets and liabilities on a given date. Tables 3.6 and 3.7 show the international investment position of the USA and of Japan from 1994 to 2002.

These two tables reveal striking differences in the international investment position between the two countries. First, the USA is the largest net debtor nation in the world, while Japan is the largest net creditor nation. For the USA and Japan over the same period, a largely reciprocal rela-

Table 3.6 The international investment position of the USA (billions of US dollars)

Type of investment

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