Powerball balloons to $1.5 billion without Wednesday jackpot winner

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The Powerball jackpot will climb again.

No winner matched all six numbers to win the massive jackpot on Wednesday, which is now expected to soar to $1.5 billion, holding a cash value of $745.9 million, Powerball announced. The winning numbers for Wednesday night’s drawing were 22, 11, 60, 2, 35, and the Powerball is 23. The Power Play was 2X.

Wednesday’s Powerball jackpot climbed to an estimated $1.2 billion after none of the tickets sold matched all six of the winning numbers drawn on Monday.

While winners can receive their winnings through an annual payment plan over 29 years, most grand jackpot winners opt to take the prize in cash. The biggest prize was a $1.586 billion Powerball jackpot won by three ticket holders in 2016.

No one has won with all six numbers since August 2022. . The odds of winning the jackpot are 1 in 292.2 million, according to Powerball.

Powerball is played in 45 states, and in Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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What should you do if you win the Powerball jackpot?

Steve Azoury, owner of Azoury Financial in Troy, Michigan, advised lottery winners to immediately work with a tax attorney, tax accountant, and a financial advisor to figure out a plan — that includes which payout to choose.

The plan also should include a “fall guy,” Azoury said. “That’s the person or adviser who keeps you from giving loans to anybody, who tells people all the money’s tied up in investments, not available. We have nothing available to help you out and we’re not interested in your project.”

The decision to choose which payout is dependent on your goals, your age, and what lottery rules are for beneficiaries to continue receiving payments, or if it’s likely you would misuse a lump sum.

Mark Steber, chief tax officer at Jackson Hewitt, also recommends considering the size of the lottery winning, and your current and project earnings.

How are Powerball players scammed?

Powerball has warned players of possible scams.

Lotteries will never contact you via email, telephone call, or social media to inform you that you’ve won a prize, unless you specifically entered an official lottery promotion or contest, according to Powerball.

Also remember, lotteries never require you to pay a fee to collect a prize.

“If you are asked to pay a fee to claim a prize, you are likely being scammed, and you should not share any personal or banking information with those entities,” Powerball said.

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How does inflation impact the prize?

With rising interest rates — used by the Fed to lower inflation — the Powerball lump sum payout has decreased, according to Michigan lottery officials.

For example, the lump sum payout fell from about 59% of the jackpot on Aug. 3, the last time there was a winner, to about 48% of the most recent jackpot.

Contributing: Medora Lee, USA TODAY; Chris Sims and Evan Frank, Indianapolis Star; Frank Witsil, Detroit Free Press; The Associated Press

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Powerball jackpot swells to $1.5B as no one claims Wednesday prize

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