Zurich — As the chair of Credit Suisse prepared for a crunch meeting of directors over the future of its chief, the vocal backing of a US investor for Tidjane Thiam had unintended consequences, helping seal the ousted CEO’s fate.

Relations between the two men had soured over a long-running power struggle, according to sources with knowledge of the situation, but as chair Urs Rohner considered a possible successor for Thiam in recent weeks, public criticism of Rohner by US shareholder Harris Associates backfired...

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