Updated from 8:56 a.m.

Shares of

Emulex

(EMLX)

plunged this morning after word spread that the high-speed networking equipment maker warned late Friday of a softening third-quarter outlook, amid order delays from customers.

Its shares recently plunged $37.19, or about 48%, to $40.31 in morning trading on the

Nasdaq

. They closed at $77.50 Friday.

This morning,

U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray

analyst Ashok Kumar also slashed his rating on the company to neutral, citing flat quarter-to-quarter revenue growth and customer "pushouts," or order delays.

TheStreet Recommends

In its after-the-bell Webcast on Friday, the Costa Mesa, Calif.-based company warned third-quarter revenue and earnings targets could be at risk due to order deferrals for its fiber channel products that provide higher-performance connections for computer networks.

According to

First Call/Thomson Financial

, analysts on average expected third-quarter earnings of 23 cents a share, compared with 13 cents a share a year ago, on revenue of about $75.25 million, compared with $36.50 million a year ago.

In his report this morning, Kumar said Emulex's third-quarter earnings per share could be negatively impacted by about three cents to five cents "if current trends continue."

Kumar also said he believes Emulex's stock faces "both valuation and earnings compression," and that the company, along with

QLogic

(QLGC)

, could be affected by the "ailing" storage industry.

Emulex is due to make a presentation at a

Robertson Stephens Technology Conference at 2 p.m. ET today.