) --



is headed toward bankruptcy, according to



In our poll, 70.9% of voters said a Borders Ch. 11 filing is imminent,

while just 29.1% expect the book seller to be able to navigate its current shortcomings out of bankruptcy court.

The overwhelming majority is bearish on the company, even after reports surfaced late last week saying Borders is not seeking bankruptcy protection and is currently working with restructuring advisors to attempt to fix its balance sheet.


Wall Street Journal

reported on Thursday evening that Borders hired restructuring experts Jeffries & Co., as well as FTI Consulting.

The market reacted favorably to this news, sending shares up more than 20%. But the stock has been pressured over the past week following warnings from the company.

Borders raised red flags late in 2010 when it said that it may have to delay payments to some of its vendors as it attempts to negotiate new loan terms. The company also warned that delaying these payments may result in a violation of the terms of its existing credit agreements in the early part of the year, and that it could experience a liquidity shortfall.

There already appears to be backlash from publishers, with the


reporting last week that one of Borders' major suppliers is temporarily halting the shipment of books to the retailer. The report cited publisher Rowman & Littlefield Publishing, whose CEO told the


that it has stopped shipping to Borders until it has more information on its payment plans.

Lenders, including

Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Report


General Electric's

GE Capital, provided Borders last year with a loan up to $970 million under a revolving credit line. It has another $90 million in loans on top of this from lower-ranking creditors.

As credit concerns mount, two executives also announced their departure from the company. Thomas D. Carney, executive vice president, general counsel and secretary and D. Scott Laverty, senior vice president and chief information officer, resigned last Monday. Reasons for their departures were not provided.

Borders has been grappling with decreasing sales, as the printed book industry has found it difficult to compete with e-readers and


(AAPL) - Get Report


The company widened its loss to $74.4 million in its third quarter from $37.7 million in the year prior.

But Borders has been grappling with its finances for some time. In 2008, faced with a credit crunch, Borders considered putting the company up for sale. While the search proved fruitless, it did end up receiving a $42.5 million infusion from William Ackman's Pershing Square Capital.

In December, Ackman said he was prepared to finance a Borders' bid for rival

Barnes & Noble

(BKS) - Get Report

, in a deal that would be valued at $16 a share.

Shares of Borders fell 12.5% early last week, but recovered to end the week down 4% to 92 cents. The stock is off nearly 21% since the end of 2010.

--Written by Jeanine Poggi in New York.

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