Global markets swooned this week in reaction to photos showing that President-elect Barack Obama had lost his shirt.

The pictures depicting a shirtless Mr. Obama wandering about on a deserted stretch of beach stoked fears that the United States’ financial woes were deeper than previously reported.

“We have had a steady drumbeat of bad news about the U.S. economy for weeks now,” said Tracy Klugian, global asset analyst for HSBC. “Learning that the president-elect no longer has a shirt to his name was the last thing these markets needed.”

In an attempt to calm investors, Obama press secretary Robert Gibbs said that the president-elect still owned a shirt and denied rumors that Obama had invested funds with Bernie Madoff.

Award-winning humorist, television personality and film actor Andy Borowitz is author of the book “The Republican Playbook.”

© 2008 Creators Syndicate

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