MGM Resorts lays off 18,000 workers amid coronavirus pandemic

MGM has properties in Mississippi, Massachusetts, Michigan and New York and overseas in Macao

MGM Resorts International has initiated layoffs for thousands of its employees as the casino industry’s recovery continues to be stalled by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Continue Reading Below

On Monday, the entertainment giant cut 18,000 employees nationwide, amounting to about a quarter of its pre-pandemic U.S. staff.

The layoffs at MGM capped a wave of job cuts and buyouts seen across a broad array of industries as a result of the virus, which has since infected more than 6 million people across the nation.

Last week, the Labor Department reported another 1 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits. To date, more than 14.5 million are collecting traditional jobless benefits -- up from 1.7 million a year ago.

MGM RESORTS SAYS 'LARGE MAJORITY' OF ENTERTAINMENT EMPLOYEES COULD BE LAID OFF IN AUGUST

Casino worker Edith Smith-Meah sanitizes a video slot machine at the MGM Grand Detroit casino on Aug. 5, 2020 in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

MGM said that federal law requires the company to send layoff notices to furloughed employees that have not been brought back after six months. However, GM Resorts CEO Bill Hornbuckle reassured employees Friday that it will rehire workers when it can.

“While the immediate future remains uncertain, I truly believe that the challenges we face today are not permanent,” Hornbuckle wrote in a notice to employees, according to the Wall Street Journal. “The fundamentals of our industry, our company and our communities will not change. Concerts, sports and awe-inspiring entertainment remain on our horizon.”

MGM RESORTS REVEALS POST-CORONAVIRUS REOPENING PLAN FOR CASINOS, HOTELS

In MGM's latest earnings report, Hornbuckle reiterated the biggest challenge is the uncertainty around the virus.

The company's "near-term operating environment will remain challenging and unpredictable as COVID-19 case trends, health and safety protocols, and travel restrictions continue to heavily impact our business," he said.

However, the "long-term fundamentals of our business and the broader industry remain intact," he added.

GET FOX BUSINESS ON THE GO BY CLICKING HERE

The company furloughed 62,000 of its 70,000 employees when casinos in Nevada were forced to close on March 17. Many of them opened again in early June but mandated capacity controls are in place.

MGM, with properties in Mississippi, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York and overseas in Macao, has brought back workers, but with 50% capacity limits, fewer workers are needed. Two properties, one in New York and one in Las Vegas, are still closed.

MGM did not immediately respond to FOX Business' request for comment regarding its latest layoffs.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE ON FOX BUSINESS