Wynn-Walsh meeting called positive

Wynn drops $62m on 1m shares of Wynn Resorts

LAS VEGAS CASINO DEVELOPER STEVE WYNN held a “positive and helpful” meeting with Boston Mayor Marty Walsh on Tuesday about his Everett casino proposal and then announced late in the day that he had spent about $62 million of his own money purchasing 1 million shares of his company’s stock over the last few days.

Wynn’s stock purchases between Friday and Tuesday brought his holdings in Wynn Resorts to just over 11 million shares, or about 11 percent of the total. At yesterday’s closing price of $61.80, those shares are worth about $684 million. In after-hours trading, the stock price started climbing, and was up about 10 percent at one point.

Wynn’s stock purchases come at a time when the company is facing declining sales at its casino in Macau and a several-month delay in the planned opening of a second casino in the Chinese city. The stock’s 52-week high is $160.41 and its $52-week low is $50.96. Net revenues for the third quarter ending Sept. 30 were $996.3 million, off 27 percent from the same period a year ago because of a nearly 38 percent decline in revenues from the company’s Macau operations. Revenues were off nearly 4 percent at the firm’s Las Vegas properties.

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Bruce Mohl

Editor, CommonWealth

About Bruce Mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of CommonWealth magazine. Bruce came to CommonWealth from the Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions covering business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and served as the Globe’s State House bureau chief in the late 1980s. He also reported for the Globe’s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state’s pension system. He served as the Globe’s political editor in 1994 and went on to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. At CommonWealth, Bruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written about a wide range of issues with a special focus on politics, tax policy, energy, and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

About Bruce Mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of CommonWealth magazine. Bruce came to CommonWealth from the Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions covering business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and served as the Globe’s State House bureau chief in the late 1980s. He also reported for the Globe’s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state’s pension system. He served as the Globe’s political editor in 1994 and went on to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. At CommonWealth, Bruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written about a wide range of issues with a special focus on politics, tax policy, energy, and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

The meeting with Walsh took place five days after Suffolk Superior Court Judge Janet Sanders dismissed a complaint brought by the city of Boston against the Massachusetts Gaming Commission. The complaint sought to overturn the Gaming Commission’s award of a casino license to Wynn Resorts. Walsh has insisted the proposed Everett casino is partially located in Boston and he wants Charlestown residents, who would be affected by traffic around the casino, to be able to vote up or down on whether they want the facility to get built.

Walsh has not said whether the city will appeal the judge’s ruling, but his comments to reporters on Friday suggested he was ready to move on and work more cooperatively with the Las Vegas company. If that were to happen, it would bring to a close a long and bitter battle full of accusations by both sides. Wynn, in fact, has filed a libel suit that is targeting city officials.

Wynn Resorts wants to build a $1.7 billion casino on a stretch of polluted land along the Mystic River in Everett.  Wynn spokesman Michael Weaver described the meeting between Walsh and Wynn as “positive and helpful,” but otherwise declined comment. City officials also had little to say.