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June 20, 2024

Record-High $638 Million Powerball Jackpot Up for Grabs on Christmas Day

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Written by AiBot

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Dec 24, 2023

The Powerball lottery jackpot has reached a staggering $638 million ahead of the next drawing on Christmas Day, December 25, providing holiday hope for potentially life-changing winnings. This marks the 3rd largest Powerball jackpot in history and 9th largest in U.S. lottery history.

Jackpot Rolls Over Once Again With No Winner on Saturday

The jackpot rolled over once again on Saturday, December 23 when no ticket matched all 6 numbers drawn: 3 – 13 – 19 – 36 – 37 and Powerball 14. The lump sum cash value of the jackpot now stands at $360 million.

While nobody hit the enormous jackpot, two tickets sold in Connecticut and Texas matched 5 numbers to win $1 million each. Another 49 tickets across the country matched 4 numbers plus the Powerball to win $50,000 each. Over 5 million winning tickets were sold nationwide.

This jackpot roll over marks the 39th consecutive draw without a grand prize winner. The jackpot was last won on November 19 when a ticket in Kansas split a $92.9 million prize with a ticket in New York. Since then, the jackpot estimate has grown larger with each bi-weekly drawing.

Drawing Date Jackpot Estimate
December 7 $100 million
December 10 $116 million
December 14 $135 million
December 17 $170 million
December 21 $512 million
December 23 $620 million

Christmas Surge in Ticket Sales Expected

Lottery officials expect a surge of ticket sales ahead of the Christmas Day drawing. Long lines were spotted outside lottery retailers over the weekend. This much-anticipated drawing falls on a holiday for the first time in Powerball history.

Powerball is played in 45 states including Ohio, Indiana, Pennsylvania and New York. Tickets cost $2 each. For an extra $1, players can activate the Power Play option to potentially multiply smaller prizes. Sales cut off 59 minutes before the drawing on Christmas night.

This is the 5th time the Powerball jackpot has exceeded $600 million. However, the odds of winning remain the same – 1 in 292.2 million.

Giant Jackpots a Recent Phenomenon

Giant jackpots like this were not always the norm. Just last year, Powerball updated the game rules to increase the number of giant jackpots. Now, the game starts at $20 million and jackpots grow faster with each roll over.

Powerball also reduced the number pool from 69 to 59 white balls. This means the odds of winning improved from 1 in 292 million to 1 in 293 million. The improved odds have led to fewer winners and more frequent giant jackpots.

4 of the Top 10 Powerball jackpots have been hit over the past 19 months under the new rules:

Rank Jackpot Amount Drawing Date
1 $2.04 billion November 7, 2022
2 $1.586 billion January 13, 2016
3 $638 million December 25, 2023
4 $632.6 million January 5, 2022
5 $590.5 million May 18, 2013

A single ticket holder in California won that record $2.04 billion Powerball prize on November 7, 2022. The winner has yet to come forward. Lottery winners have 1 year to claim the jackpot in California.

What Would You Do With $638 Million?

An estimated $638 million jackpot makes for a very merry Christmas indeed! Here’s a look at what that much money could buy:

  • Over 6,300 Tesla Model Y Performance cars at $100,000 each
  • A luxury mega yacht like Amadea – a 355 foot vessel with a helicopter pad, pool and movie theater
  • A private island in the Bahamas for $75 million with money left over for a mansion
  • 300+ luxury homes across the country
  • 17 Gulfstream G650 private jets at $38 million each

The next top prize winner can take the money in 30 graduated payments over 29 years or take a lower lump sum cash option. That cash value currently stands at $360 million. Both advertised prize amounts are before taxes.

Federal tax withholding would take an estimated 37% cut off the top. State taxes could range from zero to over 12% depending on the winner’s residency.

When Do Lottery Winners Claim Prizes?

Winners have a limited window to come forward. In most participating Powerball states, grand prize winners have 180 days to claim. Otherwise the prize expires and rolls over into future games.

Recent publicized timeline of winners claiming giant jackpots:

  • November 2022 $2 billion winner: Came forward 100+ days later in February 2023
  • January 2022 $632 million winner: Claimed 2 months later in March 2022
  • January 2016 $1.586 billion winners: Came forward 4+ months later in May and July 2016

There is usually intense speculation over who will come forward and when. Most jackpot winners eventually hold press conferences and conduct interviews about their lottery strategy and plans for spending.

Will This Jackpot Finally Be Won?

With millions of tickets likely to sell ahead of Christmas morning, there is lot of anticipation that this could be the drawing when someone finally hits the elusive jackpot. Holiday cheer combined with Powerball fever will drive many to purchase last minute lottery tickets for a chance at life-changing riches.

The next drawing falls on Christmas night at 10:59 PM EST. To win the full jackpot, players must match all 5 white balls (1-59) plus the red Powerball (1-26).

Those hoping to get extra lucky can use special numbers like 25 (for December 25), or 7 and 11 (for 7-Eleven stores where many buy lottery tickets). Family birthdays or anniversaries, fortune cookie digits, zodiac signs, addresses and phone numbers are also popular number selections.

Stay tuned as all eyes remain fixed on the Powerball jackpot to see if some very fortunate ticket holder unwraps this $638 million Christmas gift!

AiBot

AiBot

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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