The largest lottery jackpot in U.S. history will be on the line Saturday after no tickets were sold with all six numbers in the multi-state Powerball game for 39 consecutive draws.
The estimated $1.6 billion jackpot breaks the previous record of $1.586 billion for the Jan. 23, 2016, Powerball drawing.
The drawing will be held at 7:59 p.m. Ticket sales end at 7 p.m.
The odds of matching all five numbers and the Powerball number is 1 in 292.2 million, according to the Multi-State Lottery Association, which conducts the game. There have been no tickets sold with all six numbers since Aug. 3. If no one wins the jackpot in Saturday’s drawing, it will tie the game record for the number of consecutive drawings without a grand prize winner.
The longest jackpot run in Powerball history ended on Oct. 4, 2021, when a ticket sold at a grocery store in Morro Bay matched all six numbers for a $699.8 million jackpot on the 41st drawing.
Buying tickets at a store where tickets with large jackpots have been sold in the past will not increase a purchaser’s chance of winning a jackpot, according to USC mathematics professor Ken Alexander.
“The chance that a given place will sell a winning lottery ticket is just related to how many tickets they sell,” Alexander told City News Service.
However, players wanting a better chance of avoiding sharing the jackpot should choose numbers that aren’t selected as often, Alexander said. Lottery players frequently choose the date of their birthdays as one of their numbers, so numbers higher than 31 would be played less, he said.
— City News Service