Powerball jackpot builds to $325 millionBy DAVID PITT
THE Associated Press | November 24,2012DES MOINES, Iowa — The Powerball jackpot for tonight’s drawing stands at $325 million — the fourth-largest sum in the game’s history.
The record-breaking jackpots aren’t likely to stop anytime soon.
Since Powerball tickets doubled in price to $2 in January, the number of tickets sold has decreased, but the sales revenue has made up for it, increasing by about 35 percent, said Norm Lingle, chairman of the Powerball board of directors.
And as the price went up, so did the pots of cash that entice thousands across the country to play.
“Christmas is coming and $325 million would come in handy,” said Tim Abel, 63, who was buying a Powerball ticket at New York’s Port Authority Bus Terminal. The Broadway stagehand said he usually plays whenever the jackpot goes over $100 million.
Iowa Lottery spokeswoman Mary Neubauer said of the price increase: “... we believed the jackpots would grow fast and grow large because of the change in the game, and it does appear that it is working.”
Recent Powerball jackpot winners include an Iowa couple who won a whopping $202 million on Sept. 26. A week later, a Delaware resident picked all six numbers for a $50 million payday.
A single winner tonight choosing a cash payout would get nearly $213 million before paying state and federal taxes.
Lottery officials say they’re unsure what effect Thanksgiving and beginning of Christmas shopping season will have on Powerball sales. Often, lottery sales pick up considerably in the days before high-dollar drawings when jackpots get so high.
“I think this weekend will be very telling,” said Lingle, who is also the executive director of the South Dakota Lottery. “To my knowledge we’ve never had a large jackpot run like this fall over a major holiday.”
Roxie Breece, an assistant manager at a Cenex convenience store in Ogallala, Neb., thinks the long weekend will help. She said Friday that clerks have sold far more Powerball tickets than usual over the past week.
“Tomorrow’s going to be a nightmare for us,” she said. “With everybody out shopping and the drawing (tonight), we’ll be really busy.”MORE IN Wire NewsMOUNT SINJAR, Iraq — The road to the battlefront plunges straight down the steep face of Mount... Full StoryKIEV, Ukraine — Ukraine’s parliament dropped the nation’s nonaligned status Tuesday, possibly... Full StoryNEW YORK — “The Interview” was put back into theaters Thursday when Sony Pictures Entertainment... Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Capt. James Cook discovers and names Christmas Island, Brits develop and test H-bombs there in 1957-58; 100 years ago today, Christmas truce takes hold on Western Front in France, combatants observe the holiday.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Gen. Wm. T. Sherman concludes March to the Sea, secures Savannah, Ga., offers the city as Christmas gift to Pres. Lincoln; N.Y.'s Lincoln Tunnel opens in 1937; first gorilla born in captivity, Colo, celebrates 58th birthday today.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Brent Curtis reports on the probe into a city bar fight involving police officers; Vt. Yankee has its last media day event before final shutdown next week; Depot Park hosts annual vigil to raise awareness of plight of homeless.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Vermont Gas Systems puts Phase 2 on hold as the latest estimate for Phase 1 takes a 27 percent leap upward, to a total of $157 million; U.S. Attorney Tristram Coffin quits for job with private firm; police cite man in pot bust.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: In 1972, Christmas bombing of North Vietnam ordered by President Richard Nixon, most lethal strikes of the war; in 1989, U.S. invades Panama to depose, arrest and charge Gen. Manuel Noriega with drug trafficking, racketeering.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Gov. Peter Shumlin announces demise of his single-payer health insurance initiative; convicted first-degree murderer Alan Prue sentenced to 50 years for killing teacher Melissa Jenkins; veterans chafed about park naming snub.