Las Vegas Sands Drowning in Debt, Fidelity, Mattel Plan Layoffs

Finding the proverbial silver lining in today’s economy gets harder and harder as the markets continue their downward slide and one of the nation’s most successful casinos – the Las Vegas Sands – may be sinking in a financial quicksand. While construction continues on the $4 billion Marina Bay resort and casino project in Singapore, in a Nov. 5 filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Las Vegas Sands revealed its cash was drying up as the company’s earnings for the first six months of the year were “insufficient to cover fixed charges” by $80.1 million, Time magazine reported. The shortfall could trigger defaults on its $8.8 billion in long-term loans, the article stated. That, in turn, could jeopardize Las Vegas Sands’ ability to continue “as a going concern,” according to its SEC filing.Adding to the misery, the S&P 500 fell 5 percent for a two-day loss of 10 percent, the worst in 21 years, according to Investor’s Business Daily. The Dow lost 4.9 percent and the Nasdaq lost 4.3 percent on the eve of what may be an ugly employment report, Investor’s Business Daily stated.Adding to the continual stream of bad news is that more companies announced big layoffs Thursday including Dana Corp., Fidelity and Mattel. Additionally, Target’s same-store sales fell a greater-than-expected at 4.8 percent while Costco’s comps unexpectedly fell 1 percent, according to the report. Asian stock markets ended a week with a mixed performance Friday, according to the New York Times as rumors of U.S. payroll figures are expected to show a sharp increase in unemployment in October. On a brighter note, Webster Financial Corp., the holding company for Webster Bank N.A., announced it has received preliminary approval for $400 million in new capital under the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Capital Purchase Program (CPP). Under the voluntary program, Webster may issue up to $400 million in senior preferred shares and provide warrants for up to an additional $60 million in common stock to the Treasury.