Powerball: $310 million jackpot, record cash

Posted: February 09, 2012

Powerball's jackpot rose Wednesday night to $310 million for the annuity and a record $193.4 million for the game's cash payout.

No one hit all the numbers drawn: 17, 28, 38, 39 and 51, with a Powerball of 33.

New Jersey, though, sold one of five tickets worth $1 million for matching the first five numbers. The others were sold in North Carolina Georgia, Missouri and Nebraska.

(This story will be updated if the location of the Jersey seller becomes known today.)

The $310 million jackpot, payable in 30 yearly payments, is the Powerball's fifth biggest ever, and the 12th biggest for any U.S. lottery.

All the records could fall if this jackpot rolls over.

Powerball has gone up $110 million in just one week, fueled in part by the doubling of the cost of a ticket to $2 on Jan. 15.

It's helped that rival Mega Millions has been relatively small. It went up to $41 million, $30 million cash, when no one matched all the numbers drawn Tuesday night: 17, 23, 30, 37 and 45 with a Mega Ball of 4.

The record for any U.S. annuity jackpot was $390 million, set in March 2007 by Mega Millions. A Cape May County, N.J., couple and a Georgia trucker split the cash: $233.1 million.

Only one drawing ever paid more cash: Mega Millions paid out $240 million (less taxes) to two winners, in Idaho and Washington State, who hit on Jan. 4, 2011. That drawing had the second biggest annuity ever, $380 million.

Powerball's biggest annuity ever, $365 million, won in February 2006 by food-plant workers in Nebraska, set the all-time record for a win by a single ticket.

But the cash the winners collected - $177 million - is no longer Powerball's high mark.

The new estimated lump-sum payout has soared well beyond that to $193.4 million.

Forty-one states, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware, offer both Powerball and Mega Millions.

For more on lotteries, go to www.philly.com/philly/news/lottery, www.palottery.com or www.njlottery.net.

Contact staff writer Peter Mucha at 215-854-4342 or pmucha@phillynews.com.

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