The WSJ’s Sketches of Pain

Even The Wall Street Journal’s famed stipple portraits (known internally as “hedcuts”) aren’t immune from the bummer that is the credit crisis.

Here’s Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit in a June 7 story about his move to cut costs by closing branches in Japan. “Hey! I get to fire some people!”

Five days later, Pandit’s visage has turned grim on page one as his own job comes under scrutiny. It seems Citi is shutting down the hedge fund he created because of its poor results.

Meantime, Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson went from sanguine to ticked off as markets soured.
Here he is looking slightly uncomfortable, like he’s wondering what that smell is.

Two weeks later, in a story about energy costs, he’s turned surly.

Next: Teardrops and handkerchiefs?

UPDATE: Since posting this, we’ve been informed that Felix Salmon over at Portfolio had the Pandit bit first.

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Ryan Chittum is a former Wall Street Journal reporter, and deputy editor of The Audit, CJR's business section. If you see notable business journalism, give him a heads-up at Follow him on Twitter at @ryanchittum.