Why is the Block share price getting pulped on Friday?

ASX 200 investors are bidding down the Block share price on Friday.

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The Block Inc (ASX: SQ2) share price is getting pulped today.

Shares in the global S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) buy now, pay later (BNPL) stock – which acquired Afterpay in January 2022 – closed yesterday trading for $118.46. In early afternoon trade on Friday, shares are swapping hands for $114.00 apiece, down 3.8%.

Unless there's a remarkable late-day turnaround, this will mark the fourth consecutive day of losses for Block shareholders, with the stock currently down 11.5% since the closing bell on 28 March.

For some context, the ASX 200 is down 0.5% at this same time today and down 1.6% this week.

Here's what's happening.

Block share price catching headwinds

ASX 200 investors are following the lead of US investors in bidding down the Block share price today.

The BNPL company is dual-listed, both on the ASX and on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). The Block share price closed down a painful 6.2% in US markets overnight.

Today's falls are part of a broader market sell-down fuelled in part by investor concerns over sticky inflation in the United States leading to fewer interest rate cuts from the Federal Reserve. And possibly delaying the first cuts until 2025.

Jittery investors sent the Nasdaq Composite Index (NASDAQ: .IXIC) down 1.4% overnight, while the S&P 500 Index (SP: .INX) closed down 1.2%.

This came following some sobering analysis from US Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis president Neel Kashkari, who said that the past few months of inflation data had been "a little bit concerning".

The Fed's inflation target is 2%, and officials are awaiting more hard data to ensure it's on track to return to that target before they begin easing.

And as the past two years have shown, BNPL companies like Block have proven highly susceptible to higher interest rates.

"In March I had jotted down two rate cuts this year if inflation continues to fall back towards our 2% target," Kashkari said.

"If we continue to see inflation moving sideways, then that would make me question whether we needed to do those rate cuts at all," he added, likely helping fuel the sell-off.

How has the ASX 200 BNPL stock been tracking?

Despite the rough start to April, the Block share price has been a stellar performer in recent months, with the stock really lifting off at the end of October.

Since market close on 31 October, the ASX 200 BNPL stock is up 88%.

Motley Fool contributor Bernd Struben has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has positions in and has recommended Block. The Motley Fool Australia has positions in and has recommended Block. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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