A winning ticket for the $758.7 million Powerball jackpot was sold at a store in Massachusetts, lottery officials said on early Thursday morning, making it the world’s largest prize ever won on a single ticket.
Christian Teja, a spokesman for the Massachusetts Lottery, said a winning ticket had been sold at Handy Variety in the city of Watertown. The winning numbers for Wednesday’s drawing were 06, 07, 16, 23, 26 and Powerball 04.
Lottery fever had resulted in strong sales nationwide, causing the jackpot to rise from $650 million on Sunday to an estimated $758.7 million at the time of Wednesday night’s drawing. The lump-sum option stood at $480.5 million.
In addition to the winner, many other tickets were sold which came close to winning the jackpot by matching the first 5 out of 6 numbers. A total of 21 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands reported Match 5 winners, earning them at least $1 million, or double if they opted for Power Play.
If there had been no winner on Wednesday, the jackpot would have risen to at least $1 billion for Saturday’s drawing.
Powerball tickets are sold in 44 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The jackpot is paid out in 30 payments over a period of 29 years, but winners can also choose for a small prize – the cash value – which is paid out immediately.
The odds of winning the jackpot in the Powerball lottery are about 1 in 292.2 million because there are about 292.2 million ways in which players can combine the game’s numbers. About 54 percent of all the possible combinations were purchased for Wednesday’s drawing.
With the annuity prize at $758.7 million, it makes it the third-highest jackpot ever in the world, but never before has a single ticket won such a large prize.
The highest ever jackpot – a $1.5 billion Powerball jackpot in January 2016 – was shared between 3 tickets, and a $940 million (720 million euro) Spanish Christmas Lottery jackpot in December 2011 had to be shared between 1,800 tickets.
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