USA Powerball Lottery

Powerball Overview

Powerball is an American lottery game which is sold through various U.S. lotteries as a shared jackpot pool game. The draw is every Wednesday and Saturday taking place in Orlando, Florida.

The forerunner to this Multi-State game was Lotto America which began in February 1988 and changed to its current name in April 1992.

Multi-State Lottery Association

This USA lottery game is co-ordinated by the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL) a
non-profit, government-benefit association formed by an agreement with its member lotteries.

The MUSL is also owned and operated by its 32 participating state lotteries and manages the
finances for each game. It also provides other games to its member lotteries including Hot
Lotto, Wild Card2, 2by2 and Cashola.

The state lottery retains all profits made which are used to fund projects approved by
the state legislatures.


How to play America's Game

The draw is a combined large jackpot game and a cash game. Every Wednesday and Saturday night at 10:59 p.m. Eastern Time, five white are drawn balls out of a drum with 59 balls and one red ball out of a drum with 39 red balls.

Players win by matching one of the 9 Ways to Win. The jackpot (won by matching all five white balls in any order and the red PowerBall) is either an annuitized prize paid out over 29 years (30 payments) or a lump sum payment. Each ticket costs $1. If the winner chooses the annuity, the annual payment will be increased each year by the percentage set out in the Powerball game rules.

The second prize (won by matching five white balls in any order) is $200,000 paid in cash and any time you match the red PowerBall, you win. The overall odds of winning a prize in the game are approximately 1 in 35.

PowerPlay Random Number Generator

Power Play is a special feature that allows a winner to multiply the original prize amount. Powerball players can multiply their Powerball prizes by 2, 3, 4 or 5 times (does not include the jackpot). The Match 5 prize with Power Play option will always be multiplied 5X’s for $1 million cash Note that any set prizes or Power Play prizes, including the Match 5+0 prize, may be reduced if wins exceed the available prize fund. The Power Play multiplier number is picked at random before each draw. A player must choose the Power Play option when they buy their Powerball ticket.

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Who Can Play?

Powerball Player

Historically, only resident citizens of any of the member states were allowed to purchase tickets for the Powerball lottery and these tickets had to be purchased within one of the participating states themsleves.

Now, however, you are able to choose your Power Ball numbers and purchase your tickets from online lottery ticket sales agents no matter where in the world you may be live.

Great news for all those who live outside the U.S.A. and would like to take part in one of the world’s largest jackpot lotteries and guarantee their entry into the next big draw.

You are also able to check the results online to see if you have become one of the lucky lottery winners.

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Top Ten Jackpot Draws Today
Lotto Ball U.S. - Mega Millions
US$ 214 Million
The following lotteries offer the next highest lottery jackpots in the world and are sorted for your convenience by their jackpot size.
Lotto Ball U.S. - Powerball
US$ 154 Million
Lotto Ball France - EuroMillions + My Million Raffle
€ 37 Million
Lotto Ball Europe - EuroMillions
€ 37 Million
Lotto Ball U.K. - EuroMillions + UK Millionaire Maker
£ 26 Million
Lotto Ball Australia - Powerball Lotto
AUD 50 Million
Lotto Ball California - SuperLotto Plus
US$ 38 Million
Lotto Ball Spain - La Primitiva
€ 31 Million
Lotto Ball Australia - Oz Lotto
AUD 30 Million
Lotto Ball New York - Lotto
US$ 20.7 Million

Particpiating States & Territories

The following is a list of the U.S. States & Territories that are members of the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL) and take part in the Power Ball lottery along with the dates that they joined.

There are currently 32 members
Arizona (joined 1994)Nebraska (joined 1994)
Colorado (joined 2001)New Hampshire (joined 1995)
Connecticut (joined 1995)New Mexico (joined 1996)
Delaware (joined 1991)North Carolina (joined 2006)
Dist.of Columbia (join’d 1988)North Dakota (joined 2004)
Florida (joined 2009)Oklahoma (joined 2006)
Idaho (joined 1990)Oregon (joined 1988)
Indiana (joined 1990)Pennsylvania (joined 2002)
Iowa (joined 1988)Rhode Island (joined 1988)
Kansas (joined 1988)South Carolina (joined 2002)
Kentucky (joined 1991)South Dakota (joined 1990)
Louisiana (joined 1995)Tennessee (joined 2004)
Maine (joined 2004)U.S. Virgin Islands (joined 2002)
Minnesota (joined 1990)Vermont (joined 2003)
Missouri (joined 1988)West Virginia (joined 1988)
Montana (joined 1989)Wisconsin (joined 1989)

Information & Background

The Powerball lotto was the first lottery game to use 2 separate drums when making the draws. The use of 2 drums was to offer a greater degree of flexibility in game design and would allow for both high Jackpot odds and low odds for other prize levels.

This 2 drum concept has since been copied by other lotteries around the world including Mega
Millions in the U.S., Powerball in Australia and also the United Kingdom’s Thunderball and Euromillions.

The matrix has changed periodically over the years going from 5/45 (1/45) to 5/49 (1/42) to 5/53 (1/42) to 5/55 (1/42) and now to its current format of 5/59 (1/39).

The State that the draw takes place in has also altered over the years with the drawings historically taking place in West Des Moines, Iowa and moving recently to Orlando, Florida in January 2009.

Draws are also occasionally arranged to take place at more remote locations such as the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Power Ball, America's Game

What Time and Where is the Draw?

The drawing is held at 10:59 p.m. Eastern Time [9:59 Central; 8:59 p.m. Mountain; 7:59 p.m. Pacific] in Orlando, Florida. Occasionally, the multi-state lottery games go on the road and are drawn during special events around the nation, but most of the time the numbers are drawn at Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida.

The numbers are drawn in the presence of multi-state lottery draw officials, an independent auditor and a security official. The draw equipment is kept in a double-locked alarmed vault (we can't even get into it unless the auditors are present). The balls sets are also sealed by the auditors and all events are audio and video recorded when the vault is opened. The equipment is tested regularly (measurements, X-ray and statistical tests for non-random behavior). The live drawings are also open to the public. The whole process takes about two hours, so take a bite to eat if you attend one.

What Are The Odds?

The odds of winning the Jackpot are 1 in 195 million but the odds of winning a prize generally in the Powerball lottery are 1 in 35.

The latest (2009) version of the game means that under normal conditions a 2nd prize ticket with PowerPlay will be guaranteed to be worth $1 million cash.

The starting jackpot has recently been increased to £20 million. The largest of the Powerball jackpots happen once the game has seen at least 15 rollovers take place.

5 Balls + PowerballGrand Prize1 in 195,249,054.00
5 Balls $200,0001 in 195,249,054.00
4 Balls + Powerball$10,0001 in 723,144.64
4 Balls$1001 in 19,030.12
3 Balls + Powerball$101 in 13,644.24
3 Balls$71 in 359.06
2 Balls + Powerball$7787.17
1 Ball + Powerball$41 in 123.48
Powerball$31 in 61.74
The overall odds of winning a prize are 1 in 35.11.

The odds presented here are based on a $1 play (rounded to two decimal places).

Why isn't the chance of winning $3 at 1 in 39?
Go to to find the answer

Record Jackpots

Powerball Lottery Slips

The largest amount won on the Power Ball lotto to date is $590.5 million on 18 May 2013 by Gloria MacKenzie of Zephyrhills, Florida. World record for any lottery prize; 3rd largest cash prize at $370.9 million.

A single ticket won a record jackpot worth $365 million in Nebraska by a group of 8 food workers in February 2006.

In October 2005 a record Jackpot of $340 million was won by 2 related families in Jacksonville, Oregon. They split the lottery prize among themselves.

A man from West Virginia had the Power Ball winning numbers on Christmas day 2002 and claimed the biggest Jackpot to date of $314 million.

Among other results worth mentioning is the Jackpot of $314 million won by a retired car worker from Ohio in August 2007.

Statistical forecasts predict that the average Jackpot winnings have increased from $95 million to $141 million and that more than 3.5 million additional prizes are expected to be won each year.

Record Powerball and Megamillions Jackpots

RankJackpot (annuity value)GameDate# of winning ticketsLocation(s)Notes
1 $656 million Mega Millions 30 March 2012 3 KS, IL, MD Largest cash payout in world history; $474 million.
2 $648 million Mega Millions 17 December 2013 2 CA, GA Cash value $347.6 million
3 $590.5 million Powerball 18 May 2013 1 FL Gloria MacKenzie of Zephyrhills. World record for any lottery prize; 3rd largest cash prize at $370.9 million.
4 $587.5 million Powerball 28 November 2012 2 AZ, MO Cash value $384.7 million, 2nd largest in US lottery history
5 $564.1 million Powerball 11 Feb 2015 3 NC, PR, TX There were three jackpot winners, one in North Carolina, one in Puerto Rico and one in Texas.
6 $448 million Powerball 7 August 2013 3 MN; NJ(2) Cash payout $258 million; 4th in US lottery history.
7 $425.3 million Powerball 19 February 2014 1 CA Cash value $242.2 million
8 $414 million Mega Millions 18 March 2014 2 FL, MD Cash value $230.9 million
9 $399.4 million Powerball 18 September 2013 1 SC Cash value $223 million. Winner remained anonymous under SCEL regulations; also not released was whether the winner chose cash or annuity.
10 $390 million Mega Millions 6 March 2007 2 GA, NJ Cash jackpot $233.1 million; 7th in US lottery history
11 $380 million Mega Millions 4 January 2011 2 ID, WA Cash payout $240 million; 6th among US lotteries
12 $365 million Powerball 18 February 2006 1 NE $177 million cash; 8th among US lotteries
13 $363 million The Big Game 9 May 2000 2 IL, MI The Big Game became Mega Millions two years later
14 $340 million Powerball 19 October 2005 1 OR $164 million cash split by 2 families
15 $338 million Powerball 23 March 2013 1 NJ $152 million cash
16 $337 million Powerball 15 August 2012 1 MI Cash option chosen; $223.7 million
17 $336 million Powerball 11 February 2012 1 RI Cash: $210 million
18 $333 million Mega Millions 28 August 2009 2 CA, NY
19 $331 million The Big Game 16 April 2002 3 GA, IL, NJ The Big Game became Mega Millions one month later
20 $330 million Mega Millions 31 August 2007 4 NJ, MD, TX, VA
21 $326 million Mega Millions 4 November 2014 1 NY Middletown (Orange County)
22 $319 million Mega Millions 25 March 2011 1 NY Albany, NY, $193,600,000 cash value
23 $315 million Mega Millions 15 November 2005 1 CA Cash payout of $175 million chosen by a group called "The Lucky 7."
24 $314.9 million Powerball 25 December 2002 1 WV Cash payout of $170,505,876. Winner: Jack Whittaker
25 $314.3 million Powerball 25 August 2007 1 IN Cash payout: $146,985,099

How Are Jackpots Paid

Jackpot lottery winners have a choice in how they are able to receive their winnings. They can choose to have a single cash lump sum payment or an annuity prize.

If the Jackpot lottery winner chooses to receive an annuity as opposed to a lump sum, it would be paid to them in 30 payments over a 30 year period.

The very minimum Jackpot prize would be $15 million and when this rolls over it increases by at least $5 million for each rollover.

In terms of value, the lump sum payment that a Jackpot lottery winner would receive would generally
be roughly half that of the annuity value that they would get paid in annual payments.

In the vast majority of participating states Jackpot lottery winners do not have to make the choice as to whether they want to take the lump sum or the annuity until after they have made the claim for their prize. Once they have claimed, they normally have 60 days in which to make this decision. Prior to November 1997 they had to make that decision at the time they purchased their ticket.

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