Powerball officials announced the winning numbers for the February 7 drawing on Saturday night for one of the largest lottery jackpots of all time.
The numbers are 5, 10, 21, 34, 58. The red Powerball is 33.
If no one selected the winning numbers, the Powerball jackpot could surpass $450 million for the next drawing on February 11, making it the fifth-largest jackpot in U.S. lottery history.
Powerball jackpot winners have the option to receive installments of their winnings over a 29-year span. But a Powerball winner for the February 7 drawing could elect to take all the winnings in one lump sum in excess of $250 million.
Michigan lottery official Jeff Holyfield told MLive that Powerball tickets were selling near record pace.
“From 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., players bought more than 105,000 tickets per hour on average,” Holyfield said.
“That compares to 74,000 tickets per hour on average on Wednesday.”
Donald Lawson of Lapeer was the last big Michigan Powerball winner, claiming the Powerball prize of $337 million in 2012.
The Inquisitr reported that no one had hit the winning numbers on the February 4 drawing, making 19 straight drawings without producing new Powerball millionaires.
According to Reuters, the biggest Powerball jackpot ever awarded was to a single ticket holder for $590.5 million in 2013. The Multi-State Lottery Association also operates the Mega Millions jackpot game, which awarded its largest prize of $656 million three years ago.
Powerball tickets are currently sold in 44 states, including Washington D.C. and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The odds of winning the Powerball jackpot are astronomical, to say the least. Each ticket has a one in 175 million chance of winning. To put that into perspective, a Powerball ticket-buyer in the U.S. is more likely to be squashed to death by a toppling vending machine (one in 112 million) or to be struck by lighting (one in one million). But the Powerball jackpot’s odds are still better than winning the Mega Millions jackpot at roughly 259 million to one.
Powerball and other lottery game officials have recognized the phenomenon known as “jackpot fatigue” in recent years, a better’s trend that requires ever-larger stakes to encourage buzzworthy ticket sales. Powerball ticket sales fell off by 40 percent in the latter half of 2014, and La Fleur’s magazine observed that there hadn’t been a Powerball jackpot above $257 million in nearly a year. Powerball and other large-stake jackpot games have since responded by making their jackpot awards more enticing for ticket-buyers.
Did you purchase Powerball tickets this week? What would you do with the money? Tell us in the comments.
[Image via Yahoo! Finance]