LAS VEGAS – A slow return of travel and fewer tourists on The Strip translated to a third quarter operating loss of $495 million for MGM Resorts.
That’s a steep drop from the $238 million in operating income recorded in the third quarter of 2019. Those figures refer to income or losses calculated after operating expenses such as payroll and equipment are subtracted.
The owner of 10 resorts on The Strip reported net third quarter revenues of $1.1 billion – a 66% decrease.
“Amid this uncertainty, we are charting a plan for growth,” CEO Bill Hornbuckle said during a Thursday earnings call. “We head into the end of the fiscal year with a hopeful but cautious view of the future.”
Nevada’s casinos reopened June 4 under new restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19, including reduced occupancy, more space between gamblers and severely curtailed limits for meeting and convention spaces – factors that contributed to devastated third quarter earnings.
The occupancy rate during the third quarter was 44%. Driving mid-week traffic has been a challenge, Hornbuckle said, as conventions have not yet returned.
On The Strip, MGM has opened all properties: Bellagio, MGM Grand, New York New York, Excalibur, Luxor, Mandalay Bay, ARIA, Vdara, Mirage and Park MGM.
Those properties notched $481 million in net revenue – down 68% from last year.
The third quarter results represent an improvement from last quarter, when a sustained shutdown of MGM Resorts properties in the wake of COVID-19 contributed to an operating loss of $1 billion.
MGM layoffs in August impacted 18,000 employees – one-fourth of the 68,000 workers the casino company employed before the pandemic.
The terminated employees had all been on furlough since March, when all U.S. hotel and gaming properties closed.