Economy

Mega Millions is now $900M. This is why lottery jackpots keep ballooning

Mega Millions is now $900M. This is why lottery jackpots keep ballooning

As of Thursday afternoon, the Mega Millions jackpot stood at just under $1 billion - $970 million, to be precise.

Lottery officials have said that the change was in response to demand from players that they wanted to start with a big jackpot and have a better shot at smaller prizes, such as getting your $2 back all the way up to a $1 million payout for matching all five numbers. They are among the 2,191,856 people across the country who won prizes after Wednesday's drawing, majority winning the lowest possible prize of $4, according to the Powerball.

The odds of winning a jackpot remain abysmal at 1 in 302 million for Mega Millions and 1 in 292.2 million for Powerball.

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The email features the Mega Millions logo as part of the letterhead, and states that the recipient was among a group of randomly selected people to participate in an ongoing drawing. That's before taxes, of course.

Tuesday's Mega Millions winning numbers were 3, 45, 49, 61, 69 with a Mega Ball of 9 for a jackpot worth $667 million at the time.

"Everyone is talking about the jackpot and running out to buy tickets for tonight's drawing", Gordon Medenica, Mega Millions lead director and Maryland Lottery and Gaming director, said in a press release about Tuesday night's suspense.

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And then there's Friday's monster Mega Millions drawing, the largest in the game's history.

Every lottery ticket buyer believes that, and why not?

Ascienzo also says while lottery jackpots are overwhelming played by low-income Americans, ticket sales tend to hit a tipping point because higher-income Americans are drawn to the higher jackpots as well.

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The largest US jackpot was about $1.6 billion, for a 2016 Powerball contest, and it was shared by the holders of three winning tickets.


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