Powerball Lottery Jackpot Betting Odds for Saturday’s $625 Million Drawing

by James Murphy in Entertainment  / March 20, 2019

  • The nationwide Powerball Lottery Jackpot now stands at $625 million. The odds of winning the Powerball Jackpot are 1 in 292.2 million.
  • Powerball games are available in 44 US states plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • The next Powerball drawing will take place on Wednesday night at 10:59 PM Eastern.

No winners in Wednesday night’s Powerball lottery jackpot so the grand prize gets rolled over to Saturday and increases to $625 million US. This represents the fourth largest Powerball jackpot ever and the 7th largest US lottery jackpot ever. There hasn’t been a Powerball jackpot winner since the December 28, 2018 drawing which makes Wednesday night’s ‘no winner’ draw the 24th straight. This time there was a $2 million winning ticket sold in South Carolina that matched 5 of the 6 numbers and the Powerball number along with four $1 million winners that matched the six numbers drawn but not the Powerball.

The ‘true odds’ of hitting the jackpot are easy to figure with the five white balls combining to form 11,238,513 possible combinations. Add the 26 ‘Powerball’ numbers and you’ve got 292,201,338 possible combinations. That means you’ve got a 1 in 292 million shot at winning the jackpot. The odds to win the $1 million ‘consolation prize’ look reasonable by comparison at 1 in 11,688,053.

THE ODDS AGAINST WINNING A POWERBALL JACKPOT ARE MIND BOGGLING

One of the more fascinating components of the US lottery is its continuing popularity in the face of the astronomical odds against winning. Most people have certainly heard the 1 in 292 million odds of hitting the Powerball jackpot yet they wait in line–sometimes traveling to a neighboring state if necessary–just to buy tickets. Whenever there’s a big lottery jackpot I like to put the astronomical odds against winning in context against other highly unlikely eventualities like dying of a flesh eating virus (1 in 1 million) or being mauled to death by bears (1 in 2.1 million) :

Odds of being killed

by the flu1 in 70
in a car accident1 in 111
by accidental gunshot1 in 8,359
by a tornado1 in 60,000
by a bee sting1 in 79,842
by an earthquake1 in 110,000
by drowning in your bathtub1 in 840,000
by a flesh eating bacteria1 in 1 million
by an asteroid1 in 1.9 million
by a shark attack1 in 3.7 million

Here’s some betting odds on the Friday night Powerball drawing. Based on my numbers, the likelihood of there being a winner this time has increased to slightly better than 50% which is a simple function of the number of tickets sold. The more tickets sold, the more likely a drawing will produce a winner:

POWERBALL LOTTERY JACKPOT BETTING ODDS

WILL A JACKPOT WINNING POWERBALL TICKET BE DRAWN ON SATURDAY?

Yes                                     -135
No +115

HOW MANY JACKPOT WINNING POWERBALL TICKETS WILL BE DRAWN ON SATURDAY?

0                                       +115
1 -125
2 +500
3 +500
4 or more +1500

TOTAL NUMBER OF TICKETS SOLD FOR SATURDAY’S POWERBALL DRAWING?

Over 125 million                         -150
Under 125 million +130

Per Lotto Report website

WILL ANY WINNER (OR WINNERS) CHOOSE THE ANNUITY PAYMENT OVER THE LUMP SUM AMOUNT?

Yes                                       +750
No -1500

James Murphy

James Murphy is a preeminent authority on the international gambling industry and has made frequent appearances in the mainstream media including the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Forbes, Entertainment Weekly, CNBC and NPR. He has previously worked as a radio and podcasting host where he broadcast to an international audience that depended on his expertise and advice. Murphy also serves as an odds making consultant for sports and ‘non-sport novelty bets’ covering the entertainment industry, politics, technology, financial markets and just about everything else.

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