The chances of winning on Powerball on Wednesday are 1 in 292 million, and according to one expert, there isn’t much to increase those chances.
Sure, buying multiple tickets at once slightly increases a player’s chances, but this strategy also requires more upfront spending while risking to split the payout with another winner, Harvard University stats Mark Glickman told CBS News.
“Even if you buy 50 tickets, chances are you will still lose and not win the jackpot,” said Glickman. “In fact, the chance of winning as much as $ 4 in the game is still slim.”
An estimated $ 1.2 billion is up for grabs after no one came forward on Monday to claim the billion dollar prize. The lump sum would bring the winners an estimated $ 596 million.
The probability of winning by one person is negligible. Statistically speaking, a Powerball player has a much better chance of being att*cked by a grizzly bear in Yellowstone National Park – about 1 in 2.7 million, according to the National Park Service – or found blue lobster in the ocean (1 in 2 million).
Huge lottery jackpots have become increasingly common in recent years as lottery officials adjust the rules of the game and ticket prices to increase the top prizes. The last modification took place in August, when Powerball officials added an extra draw day – from two draws per week to three – to boost prizes and sell lottery tickets.
Glickman said the best strategy for picking numbers is no strategy. The computer randomly generates the winning numbers, so it suggests avoiding techniques such as picking numbers related to a birthday or anniversary. It’s better to use a random ticket number generator – also known as speed dial – as these machines are better suited to what Powerball can do, Glickman said.
“The best thing you can really do is keep your balance [and] don’t buy too many tickets because you are throwing away money, ”he said. “The key to choosing is random choice as it will reduce your chances of sharing money with other people.”
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