Mr Obama was in an ebullient mood during the dinner and drew laughs from the ballroom filled with journalists, politicians and celebrities, saying: “Last week, Prince George showed up to our meeting in his bathrobe. That was a slap in the face.”
It was Obama’s eighth appearance at the event and his last as president.
He said: “If this material works well, I’m going to use it at Goldman Sachs next year.”
“Earn me some serious Tubmans,” he added, in reference to African-American abolitionist Harriet Tubman, who it was announced last month would become the first black person to appear on US currency.
Obama continued: “Eight years ago, I said it was time to change the tone of our politics. In hindsight, I clearly should have been more specific.”
And he acknowledged that the years had taken their toll. “I’m grey, grizzled ... counting down the days to my death panel.”
But he pointed out that his approval ratings are up. “The last time I was this high, I was trying to decide on my major,” he said.
When he said he could not explain his rise in popularity, two photographs of Republican presidential nomination candidates Donald Trump and Ted Cruz appeared on ballroom screens.
Obama took a few more swipes at the presidential race, saying: “Next year at this time, someone else will be standing here in this very spot, and it’s anyone’s guess who she will be.”
After calling presidential candidate Bernie Sanders the bright new face of the Democratic Party, Obama compared the slogan ‘Feel the Bern’ with the one he said was his rival Hillary Clinton’s ‘Trudge Up the Hill’.
In further reference to the Republican race, he said: “Guests were asked to check whether they wanted steak or fish, and instead a whole bunch of you wrote in (Republican House of Representative speaker) Paul Ryan.”
Obama said of Trump: “He has spent years meeting with leaders from around the world — Ms Sweden, Ms Argentina, Ms Azerbaijan.”
He added: “And there’s one area where Donald’s experience could be invaluable, and that’s closing Guantanamo — because Trump knows a thing or two about running waterfront properties into the ground.”
On a more serious note, the president thanked the White House press corps and praised a free press.