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By Don Longo
NEW YORK -- Demand for copies of Wednesday’s historic Barack Obama presidential election coverage caused c-stores and news stands around the country to sell out their issues to consumers looking for keepsakes of the historic victory of the nation’s first African-American president. At least two of the nation’s largest dailies went back on press to print additional copies of their Wednesday editions.
The New York Times printed another 50,000 copies while the Washington Post geared up its presses for a 26-page extra afternoon edition.
"There has been immense demand for the paper. There are lines around the building. We are thrilled people are still interested in the print paper," said Post Executive Editor Marcus Brauchli, according to CSNews sister publication, Editor & Publisher. "We are scrambling to pull together a special edition."
Other papers reported similar demand for their print edition and expanded print plans, despite extensive coverage already online. Ebay had more than 200 listings yesterday for Obama presidential newspaper editions, with at least one seeking $100 for a New York Times copy. Most others ranged from $6 to $25, according to Editor & Publisher.
Obama’s victory also had some less salutary effects. The Associated Press reported a case of post-election nerves sent Wall Street plunging Wednesday as investors, looking past Obama's presidential victory, returned to their fears of a deep and protracted recession. Volatility swept over the market again, with the Dow Jones industrials falling nearly 500 points and all the major indexes tumbling more than 5 percent.
The market was widely expected to give back some gains after a run-up that lifted the Standard & Poor's 500 index more than 18 percent and that gave the Dow its best weekly advance in 34 years. However, the plunge was greater than many expected. Despite the open cheerleading of Obama’s victory by most of the national media, investors lost their recent confidence about the economy and began dumping stocks again.
Wall Street is likely to face more turbulence in the wake of two months of steep losses.
Meanwhile, oil dropped 7 percent to below $66 per barrel on Wednesday after a U.S. government report showed fuel stockpiles growing as demand slowed further. U.S. crude closed down $5.23 to $65.30 per barrel while Brent crude lost $4.57 to settle at $61.87 per barrel, according to Reuters.
The Energy Information Administration reported U.S. gasoline stockpiles rose 1.1 million barrels last week, as demand shrunk 2.3 percent over the four-week period ending Oct. 31.
Democrat Obama's first day as president-elect was also marked by reports of deep cuts in employment by private employers, many of whom will face tax increases under the president-elect’s "tax cut" plan.
On a brighter note for the new leader, the election victory provided a boost to his million-selling books, "Dreams from My Father," and "The Audacity of Hope." Both were in the Top 25 on Amazon.com’s best-seller list early Wednesday, according to the AP, which also noted the sobering fact that the No. 1 book at the time of Obama’s victory was "I.O.U.S.A.: One Nation. Under Stress. In Debt," by Addison Wiggin and Kate Incontrera.