The following is an excerpt from Emily Bary | October 8, 2018 | Barrons.com |
Square’s most steadfast bear is increasingly worried about the company’s interest in the lending business. And Square stock plunged almost 10% in afternoon trading on Monday, putting it on track for its biggest one-day drop since Nov. 27, 2017.
BTIG analyst Mark Palmer expressed skepticism on Monday about the company’s latest move, which will let consumers obtain credit from Square (SQ) to make big-ticket purchases from some sellers. Square last week announced the launch of Installments, a customer-lending option that provides loans of $250 to $10,000 for those its algorithms deem creditworthy.
Palmer argued Monday that Installments “adds to Square’s overlooked credit risk.” He’s long been concerned about how Square Capital, which once just focused on merchant lending, would fare during a downturn.
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