News

With no winner since Christmas, Powerball hits $400M

With no winner since Christmas, Powerball hits $400M

BIG MONEY: The drawing scheduled for 10:59 p.m. EST on Wednesday is a chance to win the sixth-largest prize in U.S. lottery history and the fourth-largest for Powerball, according to a spokesperson for the Multi-State Lottery Association, which runs the game. Photo: Reuters

By Zachary Cook

(Reuters) – Powerball ticket buyers lined up at corner groceries and gas stations on Wednesday with visions of hitting the $400 million jackpot in the U.S. lottery that hasn’t had a top prize winner since Christmas.

The drawing scheduled for 10:59 p.m. EST on Wednesday is a chance to win the sixth-largest prize in U.S. lottery history and the fourth-largest for Powerball, according to a spokesperson for the Multi-State Lottery Association, which runs the game.

The top prize amount has been swelling since the last jackpot on Christmas Day, and it has rolled over 15 times and increased in value after each drawing since then, said Carolyn Hapeman, Powerball spokeswoman in New York.

Most recently, there was no winner in Saturday’s $330 million prize, which grew to a $400 million jackpot for Wednesday night’s drawing.

If the winner opts to take Wednesday night’s prize as a lump sum, it would amount to $227.8 million, the website said.

In the last two years, Powerball prizes have increased considerably, due to ticket prices doubling, from $1 to $2, and California, the nation’s most populous state, joining 42 other states, Washington and the U.S. Virgin Islands in playing the game.

The chance of claiming the jackpot is one in 175 million, regardless of how many tickets a person buys.

The biggest winner in the history of Powerball took home $590 million before taxes after purchasing a winning ticket in May 2013 in Florida.

The Powerball website said the average jackpot winnings are roughly $255 million and about 70 percent of winners buy their tickets with computer generated numbers.

(Editing by Barbara Goldberg and Gunna Dickson)

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment

REVIEW: ‘St. Vincent’ shouldn’t work, but it does

Fresh
This image released by The Weinstein Company shows Bill Murray, left, and Jaeden Lieberher in a scene from the film, "St. Vincent."

St. Vincent should be forgettable, yet it’s one of the more memorable and moving dramedies you’ll see this year.

in Entertainment

Today in entertainment history: Oct. 23

strait

A look at the Hollywood headlines that went down in history.

in Viral Videos

Famous album covers come alive

18-overlay1

No, your eyes aren't tricking you. The album covers in Roy Kafri's new music video ARE singing along.

in Music

Brantley Gilbert engaged to mystery woman

brantley

The country star is preparing the tie the knot with an unnamed woman from his hometown of Jefferson, Georgia.

in Entertainment

Oprah, Neil Patrick Harris among year’s most ‘fascinating’

FILE - This Sept. 20, 2009 file photo shows host Neil Patrick Harris during the 61st Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles. Harris will host the Emmys again. CBS will air the Emmycast live from Los Angeles on Sept. 22. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, file)

Barbara Walters is back with her annual TV special.