Mega Millions jackpot up to $450 million; Powerball increases to $570 million

Frederick Owens
January 6, 2018

With a combined total of approximately $1 billion on the table for lottery players this weekend, local residents were scrambling Friday to buy their tickets to play both Powerball and Mega Millions, hoping to win the jackpots despite the odds.

If you take the jackpot cash option, you'll bring home $281 million.

Even by itself, Friday's jackpot is the fourth-largest in the game's history - the biggest one was $656 million - and ranks 11th in USA lottery history.

Saturday's Powerball jackpot is up to $570 million - the 7th biggest US lottery prize.

The current Powerball jackpot is the eighth largest, while the Mega Millions jackpot is the 12th largest, 6ABC reported. Powerball has odds of one in 292.2 million. The odds against winning one of the jackpots are also high, but slightly more doable than winning both.

The winning numbers for Friday's Mega Millions drawing are 28, 30, 39, 59, 70 and the Mega number is 10. At the 7-Eleven in the Archer Heights neighborhood near Midway Airport, lottery players dreamed of jetting off to Florida to escape the cold and of winning millions. Tonight's Mega Millions is worth $450 million.

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"I'm not aware of any other way to shield it", said Mildred Carter, a senior federal tax analyst at Wolters Kluwer, a Riverwoods, Illinois, tax and accounting analysis firm.

"My point of view is if I win the jackpot, I would spend that money here in Mason City", Akbar said.

This week was the first time on record that both lottery games offered prizes of $400 million or more at the same time.

That's because there are now longer odds in both games, leading to less frequent jackpot winners and thus more frequent large jackpots.

The top prize was raised ahead of the drawing Friday night.

Mega Millions is played in 44 states, Washington D.C. and the U.S. Virgin Islands. That number climbs if no one wins. They spent more than $80 billion on them in 2016. At the same time, one MS lawmaker is promising something that could be more valuable than a winning ticket: an attempt at getting a lottery started in that state.

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