At $1.73 Billion, Wednesday’s Powerball Jackpot Grows to One of the Largest Ever


One of the largest Powerball jackpots in history has grown even larger, to $1.73 billion, after no one had the winning numbers in Monday’s lottery drawing.

The next drawing, on Wednesday night, will be the second-largest jackpot ever in the United States. Huge jackpots have become increasingly common in the multistate Mega Millions and Powerball lottery drawings, because of changes to the games over the years and higher ticket prices.

Between the two lotteries, eight jackpots in the United States have reached $1 billion or more since 2016, including five in the past two years.

This summer, two separate tickets won billion-dollar jackpots: In California, on July 19, when a Powerball ticket won $1.08 billion, and then in Florida, on Aug. 9, when a single ticket won a Mega Millions jackpot of $1.58 billion.

Here’s a look at the 10 biggest U.S. jackpots ever.

The largest lottery jackpot to date, a Powerball drawing, was won on Nov. 7, 2022. The ticket was sold at Joe’s Service Center in Altadena, Calif., just north of Pasadena.

On Feb. 14, California Lottery officials revealed the name of the winner, Edwin Castro, but did not release further information about him at his request.

This is the current Powerball jackpot, which no one has won since July 19 (see the No. 8 entry on this list). Taken as a cash payout instead of an annuity, it would be worth $756.6 million before taxes.

The next drawing will be on Wednesday night at 10:59 p.m. Eastern.

The third-biggest jackpot, also a Powerball, was split three ways. The winning numbers were drawn on Jan. 13, 2016, matching tickets bought in Chino Hills, Calif., a suburb of Los Angeles; Munford, Tenn., north of Memphis; and Melbourne Beach, Fla., on the Atlantic Coast.

“I think we can all live on $528 million, don’t you think?” Russ Lopez, a spokesman for the California Lottery, said at the time.

This was the Mega Millions jackpot that was won on Aug. 9. Taken as a single, after-tax cash payout, the prize would be $783.3 million.

The winning ticket was one of more than seven million winning ones sold across all prize levels, including two tickets worth $2 million each that were sold in Florida and North Carolina, the company said in a statement.

A winner came forward on Sept. 25, but the person’s identity had not been released because state law allows anonymity for up to 90 days, until the prize is claimed, lottery officials said.

A single ticket sold in Simpsonville, S.C., won a Mega Millions jackpot on Oct. 23, 2018. The prize was not claimed until March of the following year, when an anonymous winner came forward through a lawyer, opting for a one-time lump sum of $877,784,124 instead of taking payments over 30 years.

A single ticket sold in Lebanon, Maine, won an estimated $1.35 billion in the Mega Millions drawing this past Jan. 13. A winner came forward a month later but chose to remain anonymous, officials said. The person collected the prize, through a limited liability company, as a single cash payment of $723,564,144 before taxes.

The winning Mega Millions ticket on July 29, 2022, was sold in Des Plaines, Ill. After several weeks, an anonymous winner came forward. Illinois is one of several states that allow lottery winners to keep their names and addresses confidential.

After three months without a winner, a single ticket sold in Los Angeles won the Powerball jackpot on July 19. The winner has not come forward. It was the second time in eight months that a winning ticket for a jackpot of more than $1 billion was sold in Los Angeles County.

The winner could opt to take the payment as a lump sum, which would be about $558.1 million before taxes, according to Powerball.

A group identified as the Wolverine FLL Club of Oakland County won just over $1 billion in the Mega Millions drawing on Jan. 22, 2021, after buying a ticket in Novi, Mich.

Manuel Franco of Wisconsin won a $768.4 million prize in the Powerball drawing on March 27, 2019. The sum was enough for Mr. Franco to quit his job within two days of winning.

Wisconsin has no law protecting the identities of people who win lotteries, which means Mr. Franco was required to come forward publicly.

Reporting was contributed by Orlando Mayorquin, Mike Ives, Eduardo Medina, April Rubin and John Yoon.



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