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Will the Obama charm bailout U.S. economy?

Today the world awaits Obama’s formal swearing in as the President of the United States. There has been extensive media…

By Faiza Zia Khan , in The big bailout: Media coverage of the financial meltdown , on January 20, 2009 Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Today the world awaits Obama’s formal swearing in as the President of the United States. There has been extensive media coverage regarding predictions about Obama’s inauguration and its effects on bailing out the U.S. economy from the global financial collapse, but the outlook seems to be rather bleak than hopeful.

I am following the media through an event so monumental in history that every outlet seems to have a point of view on it. A wide range of opinions from pessimism to outright optimism prevail. The media voiced concerns about whether Obama can captivate financial markets with his wit and allure the way he had mesmerized citizens of the world.

Security measures were airtight in Washington DC but at the back of people’s minds their financial health was a priority.

“Protecting the president may be easier today than making sure that millions of ordinary Americans are safe from the financial whiplash,” reported the Globe and Mail.

In different parts of the world, experts’ predicted that the global financial crisis has a lot further to go. Global equities spiraled and the dollar plunged downwards with the inaugural ceremony a few hours away.

Royal Bank of Scotland on Monday warned its losses last year could come to as much as 40 billion dollars, the biggest loss in British corporate history.

In the U.S, Chrysler is one of the three big US automakers that have been shaken by the world economic slowdown. It forced them to seek government help to rescue them from a meltdown that could threaten million of jobs.

World leaders had new worries as the Presidential inauguration neared. French Prime Minister Francois Fillon said struggling French carmakers would get up to 7.8 billion dollars (six billion euros) of state aid in a new “auto pact” to help the key industry survive amid collapsing demand and job cuts.

Japan’s fourth biggest carmaker Mitsubishi Motors Corporation said Tuesday it would suspend some operations at plants in Japan next month and try to cut wages, and Toyota reported a four percent fall in global sales in 2008.

High hopes are associated to Obama’s new stimulus package of approximately 825 billion dollars for kickstarting the US economy which will subsequently filter out to the global economy.

With Obama’s inauguration, thousands upon thousands of out-of-towners had descended on Washington, D.C., to attend the ceremony and parade Tuesday, and take part in the revelry over the weekend. Obama swag and souvenirs are hot ticket items in the capital city.

Expectations are high and the world’s eyes are on Obama. Whether he will be up for the daunting task that lies ahead remains to be seen.