Ailing subprime giant New Century Financial Corp., Irvine, Calif., "is running on fumes" and could file for bankruptcy protection if just one or two of its warehouse lenders force margin calls on the nondepository, according to a new research report by JPMorgan.At deadline time, a New Century spokeswoman declined to comment. JPMorgan also predicts that the company's board will fire "a number of senior executives," noting that its only hope for survival is to partner with a larger financial institution. In trading Monday, New Century's share price skidded by a stunning 70%, closing at $4.44. Meanwhile, the company is being hit with a new round of class action lawsuits filed on behalf of shareholders who have seen the value of their holdings decimated over the past month.

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