At the pandemic onset in early 2020, Wynn Resorts' (WYNN -3.79%) operations were devastated when it was forced to shut its doors to guests for an extended period. Thankfully, the world is making progress against COVID-19, and that has given governments the confidence to reopen economies. As a result, Wynn's operations have been returning to some normalcy.
However, the omicron variant has caused coronavirus infections to surge again, creating renewed uncertainty for the international casino and resort operator. Wynn Resorts is scheduled to report fiscal 2021 fourth-quarter earnings on Feb. 2. Investors will be paying attention to what's said, hoping to find out what effect omicron had on results and how Wynn is addressing this latest surge.
Wynn is steadily recovering from the pandemic
In its most recent quarter, ended Sept. 30, Wynn's revenue increased to $994.6 million. That's up by 168.4% from the same quarter the year before when it earned revenue of $370.5 million. Folks increasingly felt comfortable visiting a casino as vaccines diminished the threat of COVID-19.
Still, Wynn's business is far from thoroughly recovered. In the quarter ended Sept. 30 in 2019, Wynn's revenue totaled $1.65 billion. Interestingly, Wynn operates in three geographic segments: Las Vegas, Boston, and Macao. The two in the U.S. have bounced back ahead of the Macao region, likely reflecting differences in government policy against COVID-19 in the different areas. The U.S., once reopening, has taken a more measured response to outbreaks, not implementing any more mandates to close temporarily.
"We were pleased to deliver record Adjusted Property EBITDA at both Wynn Las Vegas and Encore Boston Harbor during the third quarter," said Matt Maddox, CEO of Wynn Resorts, Limited. "With our recent investments in innovative food and beverage offerings, a new convention facility in Las Vegas, and a revamped casino loyalty program, the best days are ahead for our business in North America. And while there have been some fits and starts along the road to recovery in Macau, we are confident that Macau will benefit from the return of consumer demand as we progress through 2022."
The rise of the omicron variant threatens to derail the momentum in the U.S. and erase the progress made in Macao. Consumers could have pulled back on booking trips, and regulators in Macao could have heightened operating restrictions.
Further, businesses are reporting difficulty hiring enough staff to operate effectively. The rise of the omicron variant is making things worse. Employees are testing positive and calling out sick from work, and others are reluctant to accept customer-facing jobs when the virus is circulating in such large numbers.
What this could mean for Wynn Resorts investors
Analysts on Wall Street expect Wynn Resorts to report revenue of $996.08 million in Q4 and a loss per share of $1.24. If it meets those projections, the figures would be increases of 45.20% and 49%, respectively, from the year-ago period.
Wynn's stock has held up well so far in 2022. It's trading roughly flat, while a broad market index is down by 7.5%. If management reassures investors that the rise of the omicron variant does not hinder its recovery, that could give shareholders more cause to celebrate.