ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — The coronavirus outbreak sent profits plunging at Atlantic City’s casinos by more than 80% last year, according to figures released Friday by New Jersey gambling regulators.
But despite those dismal numbers, seven of the nine casinos still managed to eke out a profit, no matter how small, in 2020.
The state Division of Gaming Enforcement reported the nine casinos collectively posted $117.5 million in gross operating profits in 2020. That was down from nearly $594 million a year earlier, before the pandemic forced casinos to close for 3 1/2 months, and limited their operations even after reopening.
Gross operating profit reflects earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and other expenses, and is a widely accepted measure of profitability in the Atlantic City casino industry.
“Atlantic City and its casinos endured their most challenging year in history,” said James Plousis, chair of the New Jersey Casino Control Commission. Even after being allowed to reopen in July, the casinos’ earnings were limited by travel restrictions, limited amenities, and canceled entertainment, he added.
“Yet, through responsible management, the casinos proved that in-person gaming could happen safely,” Plousis said. “As tourists return to the shore, they can have every confidence Atlantic City is safe for the summer.”
The Ocean Casino Resort posted the largest operating profit at $21.8 million, up from $6.7 million in 2019. Its owners announced this week…