City’s finances hanging in the balance
By Josh Resnek
On Saturday, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission voted unanimously to temporarily suspend operation at the state’s three casino properties, including Encore Boston Harbor, MGM Springfield and Plainridge Park Casino. In a statement from the MGC that stated, “In response to the coronavirus pandemic, the decision was made in collaboration and cooperation with our licensees to safeguard the health and well-being of casino guests, employees, and regulators.” Doors closed at 6:00pm on Tuesday, March 15.
The closing of the doors to the Everett casino and hotel is a seismic event.
The city takes in about $30 million a year in lieu of taxes from Encore. If Encore isn’t open, Encore can’t pay. If Encore goes broke, the city goes down with it.
Wynn Resorts, who owns Encore, has suffered almost catastrophic stock losses during the past 25 days.
The price for Wynn Resorts has plunged from about $130 before the epidemic began to about $54 this week. With the stock price plunge comes the company’s market share plunge – that is – what the company’s stock is worth as a measure of what he company is worth.
The market share value of Wynn Resorts was about $14 billion last month. As the week began, its market share value is closer to $5 billion, a staggering $9 billion loss.
Encore shutting its doors here has temporarily furloughed 5,000 employees who it has pledged to pay.
Right now, with no end in sight for the coronavirus, the likelihood of a two week closing followed by another two week closing is odious, and company officials are fearful of this – as we all should be.
Knowing what is real and what is not about the crisis stretches the imagination.