Payments Companies Aren’t Getting Enough Credit

Consumers use cards for two major purposes: Spending and borrowing. Investors right now seem more worried about the future for spending. But they might have it a bit backward.

Shares of companies that facilitate the spending side of cards—networks like Visa and Mastercard , merchant acquirers like Fiserv and FIS and digital payments companies like PayPal and Square—have widely fallen or underperformed the broader S&P 500 financial sector. PayPal has fallen 16% since lowering its expected full-year revenue growth earlier this month. Square is down 9% since it reported slowing revenue growth for its Cash App. Meanwhile, shares of major credit-card lenders, like Capital One Financial and Synchrony Financial , have widely outperformed financials or seen solid gains.