Omaha, Neb. (AP) – A wave of anticipation is sweeping across the nation as thousands of eager individuals prepare to line up at convenience stores, grocers, and petrol station counters. Their eyes shine with hope, fueled by dreams of capturing the remarkable $1 billion Powerball jackpot in this week’s lottery.
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How does this latest Powerball jackpot accumulate?
The new jackpot for Wednesday’s drawing will be the seventh-largest in American history and the third-largest for Powerball.
If a single player matches all five numbers and the drawn Powerball jackpot number, they have the option of receiving a prize of $1 billion over 29 years in annual salary increases or taking a lump sum amount of $516.8 million before taxes.
The last time someone won the Powerball jackpot was on April 19 for a top prize of approximately $253 million. Since then, none of the previous 38 drawings have produced a grand prize winner. Up until a winner, the jackpot will keep rising.
What can you buy with $1 billion?
Almost anything you desire. With $1 billion, you can purchase around 200 Bugatti Mistral roadsters, dozens of private jets with eight seats, or several private islands in the Caribbean.
However, don’t make the mistake of thinking you’ll be able to spend it all. Shane Fletcher, a financial advisor in Kansas City, Missouri, cautioned against that.
He said, “It’s important to keep in mind that big jackpots come with hefty tax bills. Not only on the money itself but also on high-dollar homes, cars, planes, and other assets that are typically frequented and maintained by wealthy individuals.
The notion that lottery winners can spend large amounts of money daily for the rest of their lives is a misconception that has left more than one lottery winner regretting their win.”
The largest misunderstanding we’ve heard or read about, according to Fletcher, is that money is endless, which is untrue.
What then should you do if you succeed?
The winning ticket should first and foremost be maintained in a safe location, such as a fireproof safe. Then, you should start assembling your “team,” advised Fletcher.
This may include your spouse, parents, siblings, and other members of your closest and most trusted family, as well as a financial counsellor, attorney, and certified public accountant. After that, you can begin preparing your financial strategy.
Fletcher said, “After the initial excitement, take a deep breath and go slowly.”
Mega Millions jackpot also on the rise
While the $1 billion Powerball top prize is capturing the attention of many, the competing Mega Millions lottery jackpot is also reaching new heights on a grand scale.
The jackpot was the seventh-largest in the game’s history when it stood at $640 million before to Tuesday night’s drawing.
Why are these jackpots so large these days?
The games are designed this way. Credit goes to the mathematics behind such massive jackpots—and the added difficulty. The odds of winning the Powerball lottery increased from 1 in 175.2 million to 1 in 292.2 million in 2015, enhancing the likelihood of taking home the grand prize.
Mega Millions changed the chances from 1 in 258.9 million to 1 in 302.6 million two years after Mega Millions. Since those changes, the largest lottery jackpots in the US have occurred.
What are the largest jackpots won in America so far?
The largest was a $2.04 billion Powerball jackpot that hit on November 8, 2022, with the winning ticket being sold in California. The next biggest was also a Powerball prize, which reached $1.586 billion on January 13, 2016. However, that prize was divided among three winning tickets sold in California, Florida, and Tennessee.
The third, fourth, and fifth greatest jackpots were all Mega Millions prizes, with a single winner in South Carolina taking home a $1.537 billion prize on October 23, 2018, a person in Maine winning $1.35 billion on January 13 of this year, and an Illinois winner taking home a $1.337 billion prize on July 29, 2022.
As the lottery advertisements say: Play responsibly
Buying multiple tickets only slightly increases your chances of winning. Experts have warned that the odds are so long that it is not justified to spend extra money on more tickets.
If buying a single ticket gives you a 1 in 292.2 million chance of winning the jackpot, spending $10 on five number combinations would only increase your chances to 1 in 58.4 million. The same holds true if you spend $100. So, you can spend a lot of money on tickets and still have almost no chance of hitting the Powerball jackpot. Lottery officials say that the average player purchases two or three tickets, which means they’re investing in a dream, and the chances of that dream paying off are very slim.”