NEW YORK, July 17 (Reuters) - China and Japan increased their holdings of U.S. government debt in May, as foreign purchases of Treasuries rose for the first time in three months while benchmark 10-year yield hit a near seven-year peak, data from the Treasury Department showed on Tuesday.
Overseas investors bought $26.7 billion in Treasuries in May, compared with $4.78 billion in sales in April.
China’s holdings of Treasuries edged to $1.183 trillion from $1.182 trillion in April, while Japan’s ownership of Treasuries increased to $1.049 trillion from $1.031 trillion in April, which was the lowest level since October 2011.
China and Japan are the two biggest foreign holders of U.S. government securities.
Meanwhile, foreign investors dumped $26.58 billion in domestic equities in May, which was their biggest monthly sale in stocks since $32.17 billion in outflows in September 2015, Treasury data showed.
On the other hand, they purchased corporate bonds for a fourth straight month, adding $4.98 billion in May.
Overall, overseas investors bought $69.9 billion in U.S. assets in May, down from $233.1 billion in April.
Reporting by Richard Leong Editing by Susan Thomas