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$334 MILLION: Powerball jackpot rolls into the new year

PowerballPowerball: $334 MILLION: Powerball jackpot rolls into the new year
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By Todd Northrop

This Saturday, lottery players will have the chance to buy tickets for the largest Powerball jackpot of the year.

Of course, it's also the first Powerball jackpot of the year.

Kidding aside, when nobody won last night's $301.8 million jackpot, the new Powerball jackpot estimate for Sat., Jan. 2, grew to $334 million, which is the largest jackpot for the popular multi-state game since Feb. 2015.

The lump-sum cash payout value of Saturday's Powerball jackpot is $205 million — the 16th-largest ever recorded in United States lottery history.  (See top 25 annuity and cash values below.)

Players looking to calculate what they would receive after the initial federal and state tax withholdings can find it all pre-calculated for each Powerball jurisdiction on the Jackpot Analysis page at USA Mega, a web site devoted to the Powerball and Mega Millions multi-state lottery games.

The largest Powerball jackpot ever awarded was on May 18, 2013, when Gloria C. MacKenzie of Zephyrhills, Florida, held the solitary winning ticket for a grand prize worth nearly $600 million (see Winner of record $590.5 million Powerball lottery jackpot announced, Lottery Post, June 5, 2013).

Players should note that jackpot amounts are conservative estimates provided by the lotteries, and are often somewhat higher by the time the drawing occurs.  For example, the original estimate for Wednesday's drawing was $300 million, but by the time all the proceeds were counted just before draw-time, the jackpot had swelled to $301.8 million.

The mammoth prize is the result of 17 consecutive draws without a winner.  The run-up started as a $40 million prize on Nov. 7.

The winning numbers for Wednesday, December 30, 2015 were 12, 36, 38, 54, and 61, with Powerball number 22.  The Power Play number was 3.

Even though nobody won the jackpot Wednesday, 2 lucky players matched the first 5 numbers for a $1,000,000 prize: 1 from California and 1 from Pennsylvania.

None of the second-prize winners purchased the Power Play option.  If they had purchased the Power Play option for an extra $1 per play, their second-prize win would have been automatically doubled to $2 million.

Power Play is not available in California, because the fixed nature of the prize increase offered in Power Play is not compatible with California's pari-mutuel payouts.  By law, California awards all prizes on a pari-mutuel basis, meaning the prizes will change each drawing based on the number of tickets sold and the number of tickets that won at each prize level.

41 tickets matched four white numbers plus the Powerball and won $50,000.  Of those tickets, 5 were purchased with the Power Play option, increasing the prize to $150,000, and 2 of the tickets were sold in California, where the prize was worth $68,739 this drawing.

Following the Wednesday drawing, the Powerball annuity jackpot estimate was raised $32.2 million from its previous amount of $301.8 million. The cash value was raised by $19.7 million from its previous amount of $185.3 million.

The next Powerball drawing will take place Saturday night at 10:59 pm Eastern Time.

When a Powerball ticket is purchased with the Power Play option for an extra $1 per ticket, any non-jackpot prize is increased according to a fixed prize schedule, which can be found on the Powerball Drawing Detail page at USA Mega, as well as on the Powerball Prize Payouts page at Lottery Post.

Powerball is now played in 44 states, plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.  Drawings are Wednesdays and Saturdays at 10:59 p.m. Eastern Time.  Tickets cost $2 each.

Powerball lottery results are published within minutes of the drawing at USA Mega (www.usamega.com).  The USA Mega Web site provides lottery players in-depth information about the United States's two biggest multi-state lottery games, Mega Millions and Powerball.

Top 25 United States lottery jackpots of all time

Saturday's Powerball jackpot currently stands as the 19th-largest lottery jackpot of all time in the United States.  That position may rise before the drawing Saturday night, as lotteries are typically conservative in their initial estimates, and brisk sales may push the jackpot estimate higher by draw time.

  1. Mega Millions: $656 million, Mar. 30, 2012 - Illinois, Kansas, Maryland
  2. Mega Millions: $648 million, Dec. 17, 2013 - California, Georgia
  3. Powerball: $590.5 million, May 18, 2013 - Florida
  4. Powerball: $587.5 million, Nov. 28, 2012 - Arizona, Missouri
  5. Powerball: $564.1 million, Feb. 7, 2015 - North Carolina, Puerto Rico, Texas
  6. Powerball: $448.4 million, Aug. 7, 2013 - Minnesota, New Jersey (2)
  7. Powerball: $425.3 million, Feb. 19, 2014 - California
  8. Mega Millions: $414 million, Mar. 18, 2014 - Florida, Maryland
  9. Powerball: $399.4 million, Sep. 18, 2013 - South Carolina
  10. Mega Millions: $390 million, Mar. 6, 2007 - Georgia, New Jersey
  11. Mega Millions: $380 million, Jan. 4, 2011 - Idaho, Washington
  12. Powerball: $365 million, Feb. 18, 2006 - Nebraska
  13. The Big Game: $363 million, May 9, 2000 - Illinois, Michigan
  14. Powerball: $340 million, Oct. 19, 2005 - Oregon
  15. Powerball: $338.3 million, Mar. 23, 2013 - New Jersey
  16. Powerball: $337 million, Aug. 15, 2012 - Michigan
  17. Powerball: $336.4 million, Feb. 11, 2012 - Rhode Island
  18. Mega Millions: $336 million, Aug. 28, 2009 - California, New York
  19. Powerball: $334 million, Jan. 2, 2016 - Preliminary estimate, not won yet
  20. The Big Game: $331 million, Apr. 16, 2002 - Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey
  21. Mega Millions: $330 million, Aug. 31, 2007 - Maryland, New Jersey, Texas, Virginia
  22. Mega Millions: $326 million, Nov. 4, 2014 - New York
  23. Mega Millions: $319 million, Mar. 25, 2011 - New York
  24. Mega Millions: $315 million, Nov. 15, 2005 - California
  25. Powerball: $314.9 million, Dec. 25, 2002 - West Virginia

The number of jackpots in the top 25, by lottery game, are:

  • Powerball: 13
  • Mega Millions: 10
  • The Big Game: 2

The Big Game is the original name of Mega Millions, from the game's first drawing on Sep. 6, 1996 through May 14, 2002.  The name was changed to Mega Millions starting with the May 17, 2002 drawing.

Top 25 cash value jackpots

Since many lottery winners collect their winnings in cash, the lump-sum payout is an important measure of what a winning ticket could be worth.

Looking at the cash value, the upcoming Powerball jackpot ranks as the 16th-largest cash value in U.S. history.

  1. Mega Millions: $471 million cash, Mar. 30, 2012 ($656 million annuity) - Illinois, Kansas, Maryland
  2. Powerball: $384.7 million cash, Nov. 28, 2012 ($587.5 million annuity) - Arizona, Missouri
  3. Powerball: $381.1 million cash, Feb. 7, 2015 ($564.1 million annuity) - North Carolina, Puerto Rico, Texas
  4. Powerball: $370.9 million cash, May 18, 2013 ($590.5 million annuity) - Florida
  5. Mega Millions: $347.6 million cash, Dec. 17, 2013 ($648 million annuity) - California, Georgia
  6. Powerball: $258.2 million cash, Aug. 7, 2013 ($448.4 million annuity) - Minnesota, New Jersey (2)
  7. Mega Millions: $240 million cash, Jan. 4, 2011 ($380 million annuity) - Idaho, Washington
  8. Mega Millions: $233.1 million cash, Mar. 6, 2007 ($390 million annuity) - Georgia, New Jersey
  9. Mega Millions: $230.9 million cash, Mar. 18, 2014 ($414 million annuity) - Florida, Maryland
  10. Powerball: $227.8 million cash, Feb. 19, 2014 ($425.3 million annuity) - California
  11. Powerball: $224.7 million cash, Aug. 15, 2012 ($337 million annuity) - Michigan
  12. Powerball: $223.3 million cash, Sep. 18, 2013 ($399.4 million annuity) - South Carolina
  13. Mega Millions: $214 million cash, Aug. 28, 2009 ($336 million annuity) - California, New York
  14. Powerball: $211 million cash, Mar. 23, 2013 ($338.3 million annuity) - New Jersey
  15. Powerball: $210 million cash, Feb. 11, 2012 ($336.4 million annuity) - Rhode Island
  16. Powerball: $205 million cash, Jan. 2, 2016 ($334 million annuity) - Preliminary estimate, not won yet
  17. Mega Millions: $202.9 million cash, Mar. 25, 2011 ($319 million annuity) - New York
  18. Mega Millions: $197.5 million cash, Nov. 4, 2014 ($326 million annuity) - New York
  19. Powerball: $197.4 million cash, Sep. 30, 2015 ($310.5 million annuity) - Michigan
  20. Mega Millions: $194.4 million cash, Aug. 31, 2007 ($330 million annuity) - Maryland, New Jersey, Texas, Virginia
  21. Mega Millions: $185 million cash, Nov. 15, 2005 ($315 million annuity) - California
  22. The Big Game: $180 million cash, May 9, 2000 ($363 million annuity) - Illinois, Michigan
  23. Mega Millions: $177.3 million cash, Jan. 16, 2015 ($270 million annuity) - Illinois
  24. Powerball: $177.3 million cash, Feb. 18, 2006 ($365 million annuity) - Nebraska
  25. Powerball: $170.5 million cash, Dec. 25, 2002 ($314.9 million annuity) - West Virginia

The number of jackpot cash values in the top 25, by lottery game, are:

  • Mega Millions: 13
  • Powerball: 11
  • The Big Game: 1

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79 comments. Last comment 11 months ago by Teddi.
Page 1 of 6
gocart1's avatar - lighthouse
ONEONTA,NEW YORK
United States
Member #30516
January 17, 2006
419 Posts
Offline
Posted: December 31, 2015, 8:49 am - IP Logged

Wow. What a great way to start the new year off. So will it roll over again  ? And how many times will it roll over.PartyUS FlagParty

    gocart1's avatar - lighthouse
    ONEONTA,NEW YORK
    United States
    Member #30516
    January 17, 2006
    419 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: December 31, 2015, 8:51 am - IP Logged

    Wow. What a great way to start the new year off. So will it roll over again  ? And how many times will it roll over.PartyUS FlagParty

    Opps. Sorry. Happy  New Year PartyUS FlagParty

      Avatar
      Simpsonville
      United States
      Member #163189
      January 22, 2015
      669 Posts
      Online
      Posted: December 31, 2015, 9:02 am - IP Logged

      Opps. Sorry. Happy  New Year PartyUS FlagParty

      Same to you!

       

      Am thinking if Mega Millions is won tomorrow night, the Powerball will jump up even faster.

        hearsetrax's avatar - 0118

        United States
        Member #52345
        May 21, 2007
        2659 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: December 31, 2015, 9:32 am - IP Logged

        should be most curious to see whar both pots are headed

          Teddi's avatar - Lottery-008.jpg

          United States
          Member #142499
          May 13, 2013
          1183 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: December 31, 2015, 10:13 am - IP Logged

          Disapprove hmmm. Ordinarily I would be ecstatic about a jackpot (CV) this high. However, can someone please post the ticket sales for the last 7 days to get the figures for the last two drawings?

          I'm trying to figure out how the JP can have a $45 million jump from 255 to 300, but then fall back to a $34 million jump when the JP is higher. 

          At this point in the game, each increase is always bigger than the previous jump. $9 million less equates to a big drop in sales from the week before.

          I might wake up early and go running.  I might also wake up and win the lottery.

          The odds are about the same.

            Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
            Chief Bottle Washer
            New Jersey
            United States
            Member #1
            May 31, 2000
            23262 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: December 31, 2015, 10:34 am - IP Logged

            Disapprove hmmm. Ordinarily I would be ecstatic about a jackpot (CV) this high. However, can someone please post the ticket sales for the last 7 days to get the figures for the last two drawings?

            I'm trying to figure out how the JP can have a $45 million jump from 255 to 300, but then fall back to a $34 million jump when the JP is higher. 

            At this point in the game, each increase is always bigger than the previous jump. $9 million less equates to a big drop in sales from the week before.

            Probably a lot of Christmas gift tickets in the previous drawing.

             

            Check the State Lottery Report Card
            What grade did your lottery earn?

             

            Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
            Help eliminate computerized drawings!

              ThatScaryChick's avatar - x1MqPuM
              Idaho
              United States
              Member #56506
              November 21, 2007
              6537 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: December 31, 2015, 10:39 am - IP Logged

              Probably a lot of Christmas gift tickets in the previous drawing.

              Can you imagine buying a Powerball/Mega Millions ticket for someone for Christmas and it winning? Eek

              "No one remembers the person who almost climbed the mountain, only the person who eventually gets to the top."

                HoLeeKau's avatar - YheaShea
                Idaho
                United States
                Member #94283
                July 17, 2010
                2284 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: December 31, 2015, 10:41 am - IP Logged

                Can you imagine buying a Powerball/Mega Millions ticket for someone for Christmas and it winning? Eek

                EEks!  If I ever bought tickets for someone else, I'd make sure to play the same numbers for myself.

                  music*'s avatar - nw bookeep.jpg
                  Happy California
                  United States
                  Member #157856
                  August 2, 2014
                  1514 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: December 31, 2015, 11:05 am - IP Logged

                   If that Christmas gift was a winner then you would have a friend for life.

                   How nice and quiet the previous winners have been. Very little news about them in the media. They have learned from the past. One exception is Eddie Tipton.

                   Enjoy the New Year everybody!!

                   I've been rich and I've been poor. Believe me, rich is better. 

                   Attributed to Joe E. Lewis and others

                    maximumfun's avatar - Lottery-030.jpg
                    Lavender Rocket

                    United States
                    Member #124616
                    March 16, 2012
                    2642 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: December 31, 2015, 11:12 am - IP Logged

                    EEks!  If I ever bought tickets for someone else, I'd make sure to play the same numbers for myself.

                    Excellent idea.  I'm not sure I would remember to do it though.

                    Happy New Years!

                      Saylorgirl's avatar - Lottery-065.jpg
                      Indiana
                      United States
                      Member #129225
                      June 13, 2012
                      546 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: December 31, 2015, 12:16 pm - IP Logged

                      I never have and never will give lottery tickets as a gift.  I also do not want to receive them as a gift!

                        BBLL's avatar - audi r8-wallpaper-bla
                        Chicago
                        United States
                        Member #122762
                        February 7, 2012
                        160 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: December 31, 2015, 12:39 pm - IP Logged

                        Where would you guys go on vacation at?

                          music*'s avatar - nw bookeep.jpg
                          Happy California
                          United States
                          Member #157856
                          August 2, 2014
                          1514 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: December 31, 2015, 12:50 pm - IP Logged

                          Somewhere in California. Along the Coast or into the Sierra Mountain range.Patriot

                           I've been rich and I've been poor. Believe me, rich is better. 

                           Attributed to Joe E. Lewis and others

                            hearsetrax's avatar - 0118

                            United States
                            Member #52345
                            May 21, 2007
                            2659 Posts
                            Offline
                            Posted: December 31, 2015, 1:02 pm - IP Logged

                            Where would you guys go on vacation at?

                            Skeptical I think I'd rent a private island for a month once a year