Wednesday, Nov 5, 2008
Political leaders urged U.S. President-elect Barack Obama on Wednesday to help forge a new economic order and lead the world out of its worst financial crisis since the 1930s.
Excitement about the election of Democrat Obama as the first black U.S. President was tempered by an awareness of the challenges he faces as the world’s biggest economy labours in recession.
“We need to change the current crisis into a new opportunity. We need a new deal for a new world,” said European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.
“I sincerely hope that with the leadership of President Obama, the United States of America will join forces with Europe to drive this new deal,” he added.
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Initial market reaction was muted, with economic gloom remaining the major focus. The dollar rose against major currencies following its biggest one-day slide in 13 years.
Asian stocks gained but ended off highs and European shares shed three percent. Analysts said a victory for Obama had been largely priced in and concerns about the global economy were paramount.
Obama does not take office until January, leaving outgoing President George W. Bush to host a summit of world leaders in Washington on Nov. 15 to discuss the global financial crisis which has its roots in the collapse of the U.S. housing market.