With winter coming it’s good to know that lottery messenger services such as Thelotter.com sell Powerball and other tickets online.

Although they haven’t come forward as of press time, some lucky person in the small town of Lafayette, Tennessee is holding a Powerball ticket worth $420.9 million – one of the biggest Powerball jackpots on record. The biggest U.S. lottery prize was split between three tickets in January. That jackpot was $1.6 billion. Each ticket holder in that draw won over $530 million.

The numbers drawn Saturday were 17, 19, 21, 37, 44, and 16 for the Powerball. The last time anyone matched all six numbers in the game was Sept. 17, and the prize was rest to $40 million. The jackpot has grown since that time with a huge jump from about $403 million to nearly $421 million on the last day of the cycle as ticket sales reached a fevered pitch across the country on Saturday.

The winner will have the option of a lump sum cash settlement of about $254.7 million before taxes or a 30-year annuity with yearly pre-tax payments of over $14 million each.

With odds of 292,201,338:1, Saturday’s draw may not have had a positive expected value (EV+) as each ticket costs $2. If one person bought every possible combination and no one else had the winning numbers, it would have cost over $584 million to win the $421 million jackpot. A deeper analysis may show that smaller prizes for non-jackpot combinations may have made a whale’s flutter EV+. For instance, two players in Pennsylvania won $1 million each after matching five numbers, but missing the Powerball pick. Another three players in that state alone won $50,000 each for matching four numbers.

The return to player percentage overall is just 50 percent with 40 percent going back to the states and the final 10 percent disbursed to retailers and divided among administrative expenses.

The Multi-State Lottery Association, a non-profit made up of 44 state lottery commissions, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, runs Powerball, Mega Millions, and other
lottery draws. The second-largest prize ever in the U.S. was a 2012 Mega Millions prize of $656 million.

Lottery fans don’t have to live in one of the participating states to play Powerball and other lottery games, however, as some legitimate lottery messenger services offer the games internationally online.

On December 11, 2015, World Casino News reported on a man in Iraq who purchased an Oregon Lottery ticket through Thelotter worth $6.4 million. His pre-tax winnings amounted to $256,000 per year for 25 years. The lucky winner purchased his ticket online, Thelotter picked it up at a deli in Bend and delivered it to him in Iraq. He showed up at Oregon Lottery offices on December 9, and his winnings were certified. Thelotter.com has offered international lottery ticket sales since 1996.

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