Globalstar ( GSAT) plunged more than 26% after the company said that performance degradation in some of its satellites is accelerating at a faster rate than anticipated and that it might not be able to correct the problem.

If the deterioration continues unabated, the company predicts that, following a steady decline in mobile communications services, all of Globalstar's current satellites will essentially be out of commission by 2008 for those purposes. The Milpitas, Calif., company had surmised early last year that the problem was workable until the launch of a new breed of satellites in 2009.

Wachovia downgraded the stock to market perform from outperform, while an analyst with J.P. Morgan said that investors were overreacting and maintained his overweight rating on the company. Shares were losing $3.84 to $10.64.

Dawson Geophysical ( DWSN), which sells services for oil and gas exploration, was riding high after it smashed Wall Street expectations for the fiscal first quarter. The Midland, Texas, company earned $5.4 million, or 71 cents a share, compared with last year's $2.3 million, or 30 cents a share. Revenue was up 51% to $53.7 million. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial were expecting income of 58 cents a share on sales of $49.7 million. Shares were gaining $4.96, or 13.9%, to $40.68.

Online financial-rate publisher Bankrate ( RATE) jumped after it posted fourth-quarter earnings of $5.2 million, or 27 cents a share, excluding items, beating Wall Street estimates by 3 cents a share. Year-ago profits totaled $2.6 million, or 15 cents a share. Sales leapt 49% from last year to $20.7 million, just edging past estimates. The Florida-based company was up $5.36, or 13.8%, to $44.14.

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