No winning tickets were sold for Wednesday night’s $1.2 billion Powerball jackpot, so the top prize for Saturday night’s drawing will be $1.5 billion, Powerball officials said.
The winning numbers for Wednesday night’s drawing were 02, 11, 22, 35, 60 and a Powerball 23.
The jackpotafter every draw without a winner and now he was approaching his record three Powerball players won in 2016. The – and -The biggest prizes were taken by the players of the Mega Millions game of chance.
There have now been 39 consecutive draws without a jackpot winner since the last one won on August 3rd.
“I think it would be close to a record if not a record,” said Drew Switko, executive director of the Pennsylvania Lottery. “The record $1.586 billion we had in 2016 is achievable, but it really depends on two factors.”
The first factor is the number of tickets sold and flying out of lottery machines around the country.
For Monday night’s drawing, 131.6 million Powerball games were sold, said Anna Domoto, a spokeswoman for the Multistate Lottery Association, which oversees the game. This amounted to 36.3% of all possible number combinations covered, as millions of players picked the same numbers.
That’s a lot, but considering the odds of winning the jackpot are 1 in 292.2 million, that means about 186 million number combinations were not covered, which is why no one won the big prize.
Although the game’s focus is on the $1.2 billion prize — that’s the amount for an annuity, spread over 29 annual payments — nearly all winners choose a cash prize, which would be $596.7 million.
However, the advertised prize is based on the annuity and that is where the second factor in determining the jackpot comes in asto cause faster income growth. In other words, the $596.7 million in cash goes into investments that will eventually pay $1.2 billion, and those investments grow faster as interest rates rise.
“We use investments to fund the annuity to pay that prize, so the investments are interest-based, and the degree to which interest rates affect the value of those investments also affects that jackpot,” Svitko said.
For some players, it’s not about the big prize.
“What’s so fun about that?” Jeff Bennett asked Monday. “It’s the potential to win, not that you win. It’s the potential – you buy hope.”
But even with the massive jackpot, not everyone has caught Powerball fever.
“It’s no use,” said a man named Diego. “I mean, you have a better chance of getting struck by lightning than winning that lotto.”