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# Powerball Odds This October

Topic closed. 16 replies. Last post 2 years ago by maringoman.

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Thread Starter
Idaho
United States
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July 17, 2010
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 Posted: July 11, 2015, 3:05 pm - IP Logged

Has anyone calculated the odds for matching 5 + 0 when the change is made?  I'm bad at math or I'd do it myself.

Apparently 4 + 1 odds will be 1 in 11,688,053 (right now it's 1 in 5,153,632) and the prize will be raised from \$10K to \$50K.  But I haven't found anything on 5 + 0.

Happyland
United States
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September 1, 2013
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 Posted: July 11, 2015, 3:12 pm - IP Logged

Has anyone calculated the odds for matching 5 + 0 when the change is made?  I'm bad at math or I'd do it myself.

Apparently 4 + 1 odds will be 1 in 11,688,053 (right now it's 1 in 5,153,632) and the prize will be raised from \$10K to \$50K.  But I haven't found anything on 5 + 0.

Here is new matrix:

https://www.lotterypost.com/thread/283852/4132234

Also, current odds for 4+1 are 1 in 648,976 and will be 1 in 913,129 with the change.

If the chances of winning the jackpot are so slim, why play when the jackpot is so small? Your chances never change, but the potential payoff does.
If a crystal ball showed you the future of the rest of your life, and in that future you will never win a jackpot, would you still play?

2017: 0% (0 tickets)
P&L % = Total Win(\$)/Total Wager(\$) - 1

Thread Starter
Idaho
United States
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July 17, 2010
2284 Posts
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 Posted: July 11, 2015, 3:19 pm - IP Logged

Here is new matrix:

https://www.lotterypost.com/thread/283852/4132234

Also, current odds for 4+1 are 1 in 648,976 and will be 1 in 913,129 with the change.

Thanks LottoMetro!

Apparently the website that printed the 4 + 1 odds is as bad at math as I am.

Thread Starter
Idaho
United States
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July 17, 2010
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 Posted: July 11, 2015, 3:29 pm - IP Logged

Okay, so 5 + 0 Powerball odds will be 1:11,688,053

Hot Lotto 5 + 1 odds are 1:29,144,841

Hot Lotto costs \$1 per line, so spending the same amount as a \$2 Powerball would take the HL odds to 1:14,572,421

Which means even with the change, spending the same amount of money on Powerball will give you slightly better odds at winning a million bucks than Hot Lotto would.  AND your money buys a very very long shot at winning multiple millions, which HL does not generally do.  It takes forever to build up.

If my math is right, Powerball will still be the best shot for people like me who'd be happy with a million bucks.

Happyland
United States
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September 1, 2013
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 Posted: July 11, 2015, 4:21 pm - IP Logged

What about Mega Millions? Odds of winning \$1 million there are 1 in 18,492,204 which would make a \$2 bet roughly odds of 1 in 9,246,102—  better than the new PB. Not to mention the top prize odds are better. Powerball being \$2 will probably have higher record jackpots though, we'll see.

If the chances of winning the jackpot are so slim, why play when the jackpot is so small? Your chances never change, but the potential payoff does.
If a crystal ball showed you the future of the rest of your life, and in that future you will never win a jackpot, would you still play?

2017: 0% (0 tickets)
P&L % = Total Win(\$)/Total Wager(\$) - 1

Thread Starter
Idaho
United States
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July 17, 2010
2284 Posts
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 Posted: July 11, 2015, 4:40 pm - IP Logged

Good catch.  Yikes, that puts the change in perspective.  I hardly ever match a single number on MM now, and PB will be worse.  Yikes!!!

mid-Ohio
United States
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March 24, 2001
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 Posted: July 12, 2015, 1:03 pm - IP Logged

Good catch.  Yikes, that puts the change in perspective.  I hardly ever match a single number on MM now, and PB will be worse.  Yikes!!!

There's still that PCH contest you can enter, just mail in your entrant using a 42¢ stamp.

Thread Starter
Idaho
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July 17, 2010
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 Posted: July 13, 2015, 9:37 am - IP Logged

There's still that PCH contest you can enter, just mail in your entrant using a 42¢ stamp.

Hey I just saw an ad on TV last night, you can enter online now!  Don't even have to spend money for a stamp.

When I was a teenager you still had to put all these stickers on the right places on the entry form and mail it back.  I really expected to win that sucker.

United States
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May 21, 2007
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 Posted: July 13, 2015, 10:02 am - IP Logged

Hey I just saw an ad on TV last night, you can enter online now!  Don't even have to spend money for a stamp.

When I was a teenager you still had to put all these stickers on the right places on the entry form and mail it back.  I really expected to win that sucker.

did the pch online a few and many years ago ..... its no better then the paper version

just more junk mail then it was worth

Wyomissing, PA
United States
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November 15, 2014
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 Posted: July 13, 2015, 10:58 am - IP Logged

There's still that PCH contest you can enter, just mail in your entrant using a 42¢ stamp.

Won't be winning anything with a 42 cent stamp, since 1st class postage is 49 cents these days. As for on-line entry, sure that's cheaper, but at the cost of more email spam, survey phone calls, and junkmail to deal with. No thanks! Read the fine-print of PCH sweepstakes and the like.

Personally, I'll stick with PB / MM for a near zero chance of winning big jackpot money. As for playing often, nope. Worse the odds get, the less I'll play. Many others share the same sentiments. When PB price doubled, I cut back play on both PB and MM. Both games lost out.

While most players are aiming for top price only, there are many who also play for 2nd place. While those players don't factor in much for big jackpots, they're important for growing the jackpot - loyal players are the ones who mostly play at sub-\$100 million jackpot levels. It's not logical to spend the same amount for a chance of winning say a \$200 million jackpot verses far less - that's where 2nd place becomes important for many players. Making 2nd place twice as difficult to win will drive off more players resulting in even slower jackpot growth.

While the 10X multiplier for smaller jackpots under \$150 million or so may help a little, many savvy players aren't going to play for that, since the odds are slim of it coming up. More to the point, it's meaningless, since the 2nd place prize isn't multiplied anyways.

Could be worse. At least PB isn't doing the 2nd chance game. That would have been a huge ripoff and made playing more complicated and confusing.

On the bright side, there's still the rest of Summer to play PB in its current incarnation.

Fresno California
United States
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August 2, 2014
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 Posted: July 13, 2015, 12:46 pm - IP Logged

October will be here sooner then expected. Time flies when you are having fun.

Keep the good times rolling !!!

NY
United States
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October 16, 2005
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 Posted: July 13, 2015, 3:05 pm - IP Logged

"Powerball being \$2 will probably have higher record jackpots though, we'll see."

Each PB ticket puts about twice as much cash in the jackpot prize pool as each MM ticket, and the new odds will be about 1.13 times steeper than MM odds. That means that  over the long term the average jackpot should be about 2.2 times bigger than the average MM jackpot. The same should be true for the biggest jackpot in any sufficiently long period of time.

The only real problem with a simple calculation like that is that all really big jackpots are the result of a somewhat improbably run. To some extent that's influenced by the particular sets of numbers that are drawn. Birthday numbers make a winner more likely even for a starting jackpot, and almost a certainty when the jackpot gets really high. FWIW, the new matrix should make birthday numbers less likely to increase the chances of a winner.

"I'm bad at math or I'd do it myself."

Even if you're good at math it's much simpler to do it with a dedicated function. Some calculators have one, but the Windows calculator isn't one of them. There are plenty of websites that will do the heavy lifting, including this one:

http://www.mathsisfun.com/combinatorics/combinations-permutations-calculator.html

mid-Ohio
United States
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March 24, 2001
20130 Posts
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 Posted: July 13, 2015, 5:01 pm - IP Logged

Won't be winning anything with a 42 cent stamp, since 1st class postage is 49 cents these days. As for on-line entry, sure that's cheaper, but at the cost of more email spam, survey phone calls, and junkmail to deal with. No thanks! Read the fine-print of PCH sweepstakes and the like.

Personally, I'll stick with PB / MM for a near zero chance of winning big jackpot money. As for playing often, nope. Worse the odds get, the less I'll play. Many others share the same sentiments. When PB price doubled, I cut back play on both PB and MM. Both games lost out.

While most players are aiming for top price only, there are many who also play for 2nd place. While those players don't factor in much for big jackpots, they're important for growing the jackpot - loyal players are the ones who mostly play at sub-\$100 million jackpot levels. It's not logical to spend the same amount for a chance of winning say a \$200 million jackpot verses far less - that's where 2nd place becomes important for many players. Making 2nd place twice as difficult to win will drive off more players resulting in even slower jackpot growth.

While the 10X multiplier for smaller jackpots under \$150 million or so may help a little, many savvy players aren't going to play for that, since the odds are slim of it coming up. More to the point, it's meaningless, since the 2nd place prize isn't multiplied anyways.

Could be worse. At least PB isn't doing the 2nd chance game. That would have been a huge ripoff and made playing more complicated and confusing.

On the bright side, there's still the rest of Summer to play PB in its current incarnation.

With those forever stamps, I don't keep up with the price of them anymore.  Last Christmas I noticed some Christmas stamps I brought the year before were forever too so I didn't have to buy any new ones.  I'll probably be shocked the next time I stock up on first class stamps.

* you don't need to buy more tickets, just buy a winning one *

United States
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April 7, 2002
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 Posted: July 13, 2015, 7:49 pm - IP Logged

I'm one of those second prize players who played PB with Powerplay regularly. It used to get so upset when I would read about the second place winners only winning a million when they could have won 2 million if they put down the extra dollar!  I decided not to play PB any longer unless the jackpot is very high.  I'm not waiting until October, I got out cold turkey, I figured why should I keep rewarding them with my money knowing they ruined the game for me.

Anyway, I played the NYLotto game instead last Sat. and Wed. for the first time in years, I think the odds are 1:22 million to hit six numbers, the jackpot is up to 28 million, the player gets 2 lines for 1 dollar.  I got the first two numbers on one line (17, 18), but nothing else.

So you math guys, if I play 20 lines, how much do the odds change in my favor? What about 200 lines? I know several people personally who have won NY Lotto for several million and I always wondered how many tickets they purchased to win.

Massachusetts
United States
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April 14, 2006
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 Posted: July 13, 2015, 8:09 pm - IP Logged

Okay, so 5 + 0 Powerball odds will be 1:11,688,053

Hot Lotto 5 + 1 odds are 1:29,144,841

Hot Lotto costs \$1 per line, so spending the same amount as a \$2 Powerball would take the HL odds to 1:14,572,421

Which means even with the change, spending the same amount of money on Powerball will give you slightly better odds at winning a million bucks than Hot Lotto would.  AND your money buys a very very long shot at winning multiple millions, which HL does not generally do.  It takes forever to build up.

If my math is right, Powerball will still be the best shot for people like me who'd be happy with a million bucks.

Don't you like Lucky For Life? It has plenty of small prizes. It helps to keep you in the game.

That money's gone fo ever

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