US hit by lottery fever ahead of world record $1.9 bn Powerball draw

US hit by lottery fever ahead of world record $1.9 bn Powerball draw

The US Powerball jackpot has grown to a massive $1.9 billion after no one won Saturday's already record prize
The US Powerball jackpot has grown to a massive $1.9 billion after no one won Saturday's already record prize. Photo: Patrick T. FALLON / AFP
Source: AFP

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Americans were dreaming big on Monday hours before numbers were to be drawn for the staggering $1.9 billion US Powerball jackpot -– the largest prize in world history, driving a new surge in lottery fever across the country.

With no ticket matching Saturday's winning numbers the pot was rolled over -- and even those who do not usually play the lottery were taking their chances, forming lines at convenience stores around the country to buy their tickets.

"me: spending $24 for additional life insurance isn't worth it, what are the odds also me: *buys $20 of powerball tix*," tweeted Business Insider finance reporter Hayley Cuccinello.

The odds of winning the jackpot are still 1 in 292.2 million. If there were duplicate winners who select the same combination of numbers, they would share the jackpot.

The last time someone claimed the Powerball jackpot was August 3, when a lucky ticket holder in Pennsylvania raked in an estimated $206.9 million. Since then, the Powerball jackpot has grown and grown.

While no one claimed the big prize on Saturday, 16 tickets matched the five main numbers to win $1 million each. To get the jackpot you must get the Powerball number, too.

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It costs $2 to buy a Powerball ticket, and a winner could choose a lump sum payment, calculated for Monday's jackpot at $929 million. Or they could opt for payments over 29 years.

Most winners choose the lump sum payout.

Twitter was full of lottery hopefuls dreaming of what they could do with all that money, from using it to help the needy to buying every single one of their followers "a Classic Chocolate Frosty from @Wendys".

Hope springs eternal for some enthusiasts.

"My psychic told me November 12th was gonna be the best day of my life, so if there's still no powerball winner by then, I’m buying as many tickets as possible," wrote one Twitter user.

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Source: AFP

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