Coronavirus Fears Cause Macao To Close Casinos

Gambling Mecca To Close Casinos For Two Weeks

Mitch Kelly
February 04, 2020 - 8:00 am
People wearing face masks walk in front of the Grand Lisboa Hotel on January 28, 2020 in Macau, China.

Anthony Kwan/Getty Images

LAS VEGAS, NV (KXNT) - Coronavirus fears in the gambling mecca of Macao have led officials in that city to decide to close their casinos for a couple of weeks.

The decision comes as a couple of casino workers have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, which has killed over 400 and left thousand sickened.

Since the beginning of the year, visitor numbers in Macao, dubbed "The Las Vegas of Asia" have dropped by close to 90 percent.

Casino stocks fells sharply on the news, with shares of Wynn Resorts and MGM tumbling sharply.

The closures come at the worst possible time as January is the time of the Lunar New Year, the busiest time for travel in China.

Close to 40 million people visited Macao in 2019.