Powerball Announces Winning Numbers in $950 Million Jackpot and No One Won
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — It's the largest jackpot in history and the numbers have been drawn.
The winning numbers for the record $950 million Powerball jackpot are 32-16-19-57-34 and Powerball number 13.
The Multi-State Lottery Association announced the numbers live on television and on its website Saturday night.
Powerball has now announced there were no winners in the already record-breaking jackpot.
All six numbers must be correct to win, although the first five can be in any order. The next jackpot is expected to soar to between $1.3 billion and $1.5 billion by Wednesday's drawing.
Since Nov. 4, the Powerball jackpot has grown from its $40 million starting point as no one has won the jackpot. Such a huge jackpot was just what officials with the Multi-State Lottery Association, which runs the Powerball game, hoped for last fall when they changed the odds of matching all the Powerball numbers, from about one in 175 million to one in 292.2 million. By making it harder to win a jackpot, the tougher odds made the ever-larger prizes inevitable.
The jackpot will be the biggest since a $564.1 million Powerball prize shared by players from North Carolina, Texas and Puerto Rico in February 2015. The previous biggest jackpot ever was a $656 million Mega Millions prize won in 2012. Powerball's largest jackpot was more than $590 million in May 2013.
The U.S. saw sales of $277 million on Friday alone and more than $400 million Saturday, according to Gary Grief, the executive director of the Texas Lottery.
ODDS OF WINNING
To put it gently, not good. The odds are one in 292.2 million. Realistically, you're really, really, really unlikely to win. One hopeful thought: Scott A. Norris, an assistant professor of mathematics at Southern Methodist University, says your tiny odds improve a bit if you let the computer pick your numbers rather than choosing yourself.
POSSIBLE NUMBER COMBINATIONS
There are 292.2 million possible combinations of the five white balls and red Powerball. That's where the one in 292.2 million odds comes from, and they stay the same regardless of how big the jackpot grows or how many people buy tickets.
Once you beat the astronomical odds and win, you'll get to choose between being paid $1.3 billion through annual payments over 29 years or one $806 million cash payment. Those figures are before federal and state taxes, which will eat up roughly half of the cash-option prize. What's your best bet? Olivia S. Mitchell, a professor of insurance and risk management at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, says a safe option to avoid the risk of overspending or an investment mishap would be to take the annuity.
SINCE THE LAST WINNER
The jackpot started at $40 million on Nov. 4 and has been growing since then because there have been no big winners for the twice-weekly jackpots. Because the payout is based on sales, the prize has grown more quickly as people rush to buy tickets. More ticket sales also make it more likely there will be a winner, as all the extra tickets mean more number combinations are covered.
STATES WHERE THE GAME IS PLAYED
Powerball is played in 44 states as well as the District of Columbia, U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.
A regular ticket costs $2 — about the same as a gallon of gas.