Powerball Jumps To $100 Million, Still Dwarfed By $291 Million Mega Millions Jackpot

The Powerball jackpot rose $19 million after another jackpot without a winner this week, putting the total jackpot at $100 million.

The jackpot is still small in comparison to the Mega Millions jackpot, however, which reached $291 million this week.

As Philly.com noted, lottery players still made the Powerball drawing popular despite the smaller prize:

“Before last night, the Powerball jackpot stood at $81 million vs. $257 million for Mega Millions through Tuesday, then vs. $291 million for Mega Millions on Wednesday.

“The new Mega Millions cash payout of $157 million was nearly double Powerball’s annuity, payable in 30 yearly installments.

“And yet Powerball sold enough $2 tickets to nearly double its minimum $10 million increase and land at $100 million for the annuity, $56.1 million for the cash.”

Mega Millions had been consistently behind Powerball jackpots in the past 18 months — not one of Mega Millions’ last 21 jackpots topped $200 million while Powerball did 10 times over that period. So in October, Mega Millions implemented some changes that mad for bigger jackpots but also decreased odds.

The starting jackpot increased to $15 million from $12 million, and the annuity payout changed to 30 years from 26 years.

The number of Mega balls also changed, going from 56 total balls to a more challenging 75. The Mega number field also fell, going from 46 balls to 15. This caused the odds of winning to fall to 1 in 259 million from 1 in 176 million.

The changes made it so Mega Millions goes longer between jackpots, ensuring that the top prize is able to grow.

Both Powerball and Mega Millions are in identical territories, with 43 states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The next Powerball drawing is on Saturday, with a top prize of $100 million. Winning numbers can be found here.

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