This cartoon by Kipper Williams from The Guardian plays on the double meaning of the word 'haircut'. As we can see in the cartoon, you go to the hairdresser's to get a haircut. But 'haircut' is also used in finance when a lender or investor accepts a valuation or return that is less than optimal, especially to partially forgive a debt. In the context of the euro zone crisis, Greek private bondholders are now facing a bigger loss than the 21 percent agreed in July—German and French government advisers have urged that Athens be allowed to write off around 50 per cent of its debt.
In the language of hairdressing, a 'number one' cut is shorter than a 'number two'. So the joke is that a 'Greek bond' would be even shorter than that.
• Calls for 50% haircut on Greek debt (Irish Times)
• French Minister: Open to Bigger Haircuts on Greek Debt (Wall Street Journal)