DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Strong sales boosted a Powerball jackpot to an estimated $1.6 billion, making it the largest lottery prize in history.
A drawing will be held Saturday night for the Powerball prize, which hasn’t been won in more than three months. That string of 39 consecutive drawings without a winner is a reflection of the tough odds of winning a jackpot, at 1 in 292.2 million.
The jackpot increased Friday is the prize for a winner who chooses an annuity, paid annually over 29 years.
Almost all winners instead opt for the cash prize, which for Saturday night’s drawing would be an estimated $782.4 million.
The prize leapfrogged Friday over the previous all-time high — a $1.586 billion Powerball jackpot in 2016 that was shared by three winners — and the $1.537 billion Mega Millions prize won in October 2018.
How should you spend the money? We decided to ask some very good financial planners — preschoolers and kindergartners.
Powerball all-time largest jackpots
- $1.6 billion: Nov. 5, 2022
- $1.586 billion: Jan. 13, 2016 (three tickets sold
- $768.4 million: March 27, 2019
- $758.7 million: Aug. 23, 2017
- $731.1 million: Jan. 20, 2021
- $699.8 million: Oct. 4, 2021
- $687.8 million: Oct. 27, 2018 (two tickets)
- $632.6 million: Jan. 5, 2022 (two tickets)
- $590.5 million: May 18, 2013
- $587.5 million: Nov. 28, 2012 (two tickets)
Mega Millions all-time largest jackpots
- $1.537 billion: Oct. 23, 2018
- $1.337 billion: July 29, 2022
- $1.050 billion: Jan. 22, 2021
- $655 million: March 30, 2012 (three tickets sold)
- $648 million: Dec. 17, 2013 (two tickets sold
- $543 million: July 24, 2018
- $536 million: July 8, 2016
- $533 million: March 30, 2018
- $522 million: June 7, 2019
- $516 million: May 21, 2021
In the 5 states without lotteries, a case of Powerball envy
The largest lottery prize in U.S. history has people across the country clamoring for a chance to win a mega jackpot.
But in the five states without a lottery, envious bystanders are crossing state lines or sending ticket money to friends and family across lines, hoping to get in on the action.
Utah, Nevada, Hawaii, Alaska and Alabama do not have a lottery. A mixture of reasons have kept the games away including objections from conservatives, concerns about how a lottery would impact low-income families or a desire not to compete with existing casinos.