The past 12 months have reduced FirstPlus Financial Group-by far the largest company in the controversial high-loan-to-value market-from a hot commodity to a short-seller's dream.

The company, which once had $2.3 billion in market capitalization, is now worth less than $445 million, with the sharpest decline coming in the past week. The company traded at a 52-week low Wednesday of $9.5625, a fraction of last October's high of $61.875.

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