U.S. Powerball lottery players eye $359 million prize

Reuters News
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Posted: Nov 23, 2016 7:31 PM

By Rory Carroll

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Lottery players checked their Powerball tickets after numbers were drawn on Wednesday for one of the biggest jackpots - $359 million - in U.S. history that grew over the last few weeks as no one took home the prize.

The winning numbers selected were 07 32 41 47 61, with the Powerball 03. The next draw will be held on Saturday.

Wednesday's draw was for the 11th largest-ever Powerball jackpot and the 18th largest jackpot in U.S. history, lottery officials said.

The odds of winning the Powerball jackpot are 1 in 292 million.

The jackpot has rolled over twice per week since someone matched all six numbers on Sept. 17.

Powerball is played in 44 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Players can either buy $2 tickets using their own numbers or have them randomly generated by a computer.

If a single winner claims the jackpot on Wednesday's drawing, they would receive $359 million over 30 years or $219.6 million in a lump sum payment, before taxes.

The largest ever lottery prize of $1.6 billion was split between three winning tickets in January.

It is one of several games run by the Multi-State Lottery Association, a non-profit owned and operated by member states' lotteries.

The Mega Millions lottery, also offered by the association, produced the country's second-largest-ever prize, worth $656 million, in a 2012 drawing.

For every $1 worth of Powerball sales, half goes to prizes, 40 percent to state governments for causes such as education, and 10 percent to retailers who sell the tickets and other administrative costs.

(Reporting by Rory Carroll and Brendan O'Brien, editing by G Crosse and Simon Cameron-Moore)