A large fly interrupted the president as he presented his picks to head the Securities and Exchange Commission and a watchdog for financial consumer products.
Under bright television lights, the fly darted around the president's head as he spoke in the White House's ornate State Dining Room, alighting briefly on the middle of his forehead.
"We need cops on the beat to enforce the law," the president said, speaking about SEC nominee Mary Jo White and Richard Cordray, who he renominated to continue as head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
Obama broke off to swat at the intruder, which flew away.
"This guy is bothering me here," Obama said, glaring at his staff.
The insect was luckier than a fly that harassed Obama in 2009 while taping a television interview.
"Get out of here," he said, before smacking and killing the fly. "I got the sucker," he said at the time. An animal rights group protested.
(Reporting by Mark Felsenthal, Editing by Alistair Bell and David Brunnstrom)