Breaking down the odds for winning Powerball’s $700M jackpot


Posted on: August 23rd, 2017 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) –The second biggest Powerball drawing in U.S. history has now reached $700 million, and that number could rise as more people buy tickets.

The winning numbers will be chosen Wednesdaty night in Tallahassee, Florida. Some experts from Powerball gave ABC’s Good Morning America a little insight on the overall odds of taking home the grand prize.

Powerball officials have added more numbers to the mix, which they said would make it easier for players to win smaller prizes. But more numbers have reduced the odds of winning to 1 in 292 million from 1 in 175 million.

“More play happens at the higher level so your odds of sharing it are greater at the greater jackpot levels,” Powerball chairman Charlie McIntyre told ABC News.

There has not been a winning Powerball ticket since June 14, when the jackpot was $40 million.

Powerball officials told ABC News they expect to sell 170 million tickets between last Saturday and tonight’s drawing.

Buying more tickets may seem like the secret to success, but McIntyre reiterated that is not the case.

“Your odds are just as good as anyone else,” he said. “I’ve paid winners who bought one ticket, I’ve paid winners who bought 100 tickets, so it doesn’t matter you just have to have one ticket at least.”

“It’s a completely random event,” he added.

McIntyre also said luck can strike anywhere. “I’ve paid them from stores that sold 10 tickets in a day … and millions in a year, so it’s completely random.”

Experts also suggest that players use the full range of numbers available and not limit their chances by playing a sequence such as a birthday, since months only have 31 numbers and Powerball numbers go up to 69.

If there is a winner, he or she could choose an annuity option to receive 30 payments over 29 years or take a cash option, which would be $443.3 million, according to Powerball.

The biggest Powerball jackpot in history was $1.6 billion in January 2016. Winners in California, Florida and Tennessee split the prize.

Powerball is played in 44 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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