STEVE WYNN, THE TRANSPARENT CAPITALIST

Steve Wynn is a capitalist. He also built his business from nothing, the epitome of the small business owner, and treats his employees well, in good times and bad (no layoffs). He’s also an honest capitalist. He’s also an honest capitalist with some valuable, real world, and thoughtful insight more relevant now than ever before. This man understands economics and the dangerous political tide we are all facing. All were clearly evident in yesterday’s conference call.

Here is Mr. Wynn referring to the convention business his company lost after President Obama’s negative comments on companies’ outings to Las Vegas:

“If that’s that class warfare or as I mentioned earlier that capitalism needs to be punished, if that is part of the mentality of this administration we’re in for a worse time than we expected….I created 4,000 or 5,000 new jobs here, does that make us a bad guy? How many new jobs did Uncle Sam create? Zero.”

Nor was he one-sided in his criticisms:

“…the political leadership from Washington was completely lacking in the first $350 or $400 billion they spent last year. So, that money went down the drain and didn’t produce the kind of result it was suppose to. Theoretically there was suppose to be some smart people on the job paying attention to this like the Secretary of Treasury and people like that, the former chairman of Goldman Sachs….this last stimulus program that has come out of Washington is more of a welfare program than a real jobs creation program in spite of what the President says.”

On the honesty and transparency front, Mr. Wynn spoke openly about the difficult environment and didn’t try to sugar coat it in any way. He talked down an overly excited sell side analyst who was trying to justify his buy rating. Wynn provided an education on why the low hold % was not just bad luck. Rather, it was also due to the lower velocity of actual gambling when chips are taken out (see our post “WYNN WON’T BE WINNING AS MUCH” for a more detailed discussion). The low hold percentage will continue, Mr. Wynn said. He didn’t have to volunteer this analysis but he did.

This corporate transparency should be applauded.


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