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Paul J. Davies

Credit Suisse’s Foundation Is Cracking as Rich Clients Flee

The Swiss bank’s wealth business is being hit hard by the uncertainty and concern over its restructuring

Warning signs for clients

Warning signs for clients

Photographer: Stefan Wermuth/Bloomberg

Credit Suisse Group AG cleared one hurdle in its last-ditch radical overhaul after shareholders backed its plan on Wednesday to raise $4 billion in equity funding in a two-part stock sale. But the trading statement from the Swiss bank ahead of the vote showed just how desperate is its fight for survival.

The bank’s core wealth business — the heart of Chairman Axel Lehmann’s rebuilding blueprint — is suffering a crisis of credibility among clients at a time when an elite private bank ought to be reveling in its role as a trusted shepherd in treacherous markets.