Las Vegas billionaire loses billions this year

Sep 22, 2008 8:21 PM

by Ray Poirier | There’s no need to pass the hat around to keep Sheldon Adelson from missing a meal. But, then again, there are not many people that can look at their net worth and see a drop of $13 billion.

That is what Adelson, founder and largest single stockholder in Las Vegas Sands Corp., loss during the past year, according to the Forbes’ list of the world’s billionaires.

The loss wasn’t in cash like some Vegas guy who tears up a losing ticket on the NFL game of the week.

It is what is called a paper loss since Adelson’s treasure trove is primarily in Las Vegas Sands shares. The price of those shares fell during the past 52 weeks from a high of $148.76 each to a low of $30.56.

Las Vegas Sands owns the Venetian and Palazzo hotel/casinos on the Las Vegas Strip, and the Venetian Macao in Macau. The company also has projects underway in Macau, Singapore and Pennsylvania.

Adelson wasn’t alone in seeing his nest egg devalued. Casino mogul Kirk Kerkorian of MGM MIRAGE Inc. experienced a loss of $6 billion as his company’s shares took a nose dive from the high $90 level to a more current $31 per share.