‘Lottery Fever’ Swells Mega Millions Jackpot to $1.1B, Powerball to $750M

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‘Lottery Fever’ Swells Mega Millions Jackpot to $1.1B, Powerball to $750M

The six drawn numbers on Friday night were not matched by any Mega Millions ticket. It was the thirty-first drawing in a row without a jackpot winner.

The predicted annuitized jackpot for Tuesday, March 26, the game's next drawing, is expected to reach $1 billion or more—a rare occurrence in the 22-year history of Mega Millions. Tuesday's jackpot is expected to be approximately $1.1 billion, according to lottery officials with the Mega Millions Consortium, which holds the drawings at the WSB-TV studios in Atlanta at 11 p.m. ET on Tuesdays and Fridays.


"Lottery fever continues to spread throughout the country,” said Georgia Lottery President and CEO Gretchen Corbin, who is the lead director of the Mega Millions Consortium. The Georgia Lottery oversees each Mega Millions draw.


The $1.1 billion jackpot ranks fifth all-time among Mega Millions jackpots. The richest came last August, when a player in Florida won a $1.602 billion jackpot.

Top Mega Millions Jackpots — Winner

1. $1.602B — August 2023 — Florida

2. $1.537B — October 2018 — South Carolina

3. $1.348B — January 2023 — Maine

4. $1.337B — July 2022 — Illinois

5. $1.100B — March 2024 — ?


Lottery Deficit

Since December 8, when two tickets sold in California split a $395 million reward, the Mega Millions jackpot has not been hit. It has also been extremely unlucky for Powerball players to win the big prize.   

There has only been one Powerball jackpot win in this year. The good fortune began early in the year when a player from Michigan won the $842.4 million prize in the drawing on January 2.

With a jackpot odds of one in 292.2 million, Powerball offers significantly better odds and is selected three times a week. It is one in 302.5 million chances to win the Mega Millions top prize.

Tonight at 10:59 p.m. ET, the Florida Lottery draw studio in Tallahassee will draw the Powerball. The jackpot streak will reach its 35th drawing on Saturday.


Top Powerball Jackpots — Winner(s)

1. $2.04B — November 2022 — California

2. $1.765B — October 2023 — California

3. $1.586B — January 2016 — California, Florida, Tennessee

4. $1.08B — July 2023 — California

5. $842.4M — January 2024 — Michigan

6. $768.4M — March 2019 — Wisconsin

7. $758.7M — August 2017 — Massachusetts

8. $754.6M — February 2023 — Washington

9. $750M — March 2024 — ?


Play sensibly

Huge jackpots, according to lottery administrators, spark more interest and media attention, which boosts ticket sales and provides participating lotteries with greater rewards. On the other hand, representatives of Powerball and Mega Millions advocate responsible gaming.   


"Large jackpots provide entertainment and winnings for our players nationwide while contributing to the beneficiary programs funded by each lottery. We appreciate our players and dedicated retailers, and we encourage everyone to play responsibly,” Corbin said.


Aside from being cautious about fraud, players should be aware that larger jackpots tend to attract con artists who will do whatever to trick players into giving them personal information.

Mega Millions declared earlier this month that participants in lotteries are never required to provide the details of their bank accounts in order to claim their winnings. Additionally, lotteries don't use social media to contact winners or send emails informing them that they need to pay taxes on their winnings before getting their money.