Krispy Kreme Doughnuts has asked the New York Stock Exchange for a three-month extension to file its 2004 annual report.

The country's second-largest doughnut chain has not filed earnings statements since the January 2005 removal of chief executive Scott Livengood and its announcement that earnings statements for the last three quarters of the 2004 fiscal year would be revised.

The company now faces a Jan. 30 deadline that could trigger the start of delisting by the stock exchange. Under the NYSE's rules, delisting procedures can begin nine months after a company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission are formally due. The stock exchange has given no indication that it would take such a drastic step.

The SEC and federal prosecutors have been probing into how Krispy Kreme accounted for the repurchase of franchises for its factory stores. The company arranged $225 million in loans in April to stay out of bankruptcy, and as part of the deal had been required to file its audited financial statement by Dec. 15. The company is now in talks with its lenders about getting an extension.

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