The Powerball jackpot has hit $360 million (although after taxes you'll get $229.2 million) since no one hit Satuday's winning numbers. Dreams of big-money living are fueling rabid lottery ticket sales in states across the country despite the 1 in 175 million odds for picking the winning numbers for the Powerball jackpot of $360 million.
The Powerball jackpot is obviously more money than just about everyone will see in a lifetime; even those rich Wall Street guys who won last year weren't $360 million rich. We're talking Mitt Romney money. So, in between the fantasies of how you'll quit your job or leave your spouse if you pick the winning numbers for the Powerball jackpot, you might want to shift your focus on to some actual strategy. Obviously, there is no sure fire way to know the winning numbers for the $360 million Powerball jackpot (that's kind of the point). However, there are a few mathematical and common sense tips that can up your odds of winning a little bit so you can feel like you're playing the lottery, instead of the lottery playing you.
Common sense says that the more Powerball jackpot tickets you buy, the more chances you have of getting winning numbers. (Although common sense probably has no place in Powerball). Instead of picking up an extra two or three Powerball jackpot tickets at the local Quick-E Mart, a smarter play is to get involved in a lottery pool. Most people do them through work, where a few dozen co-workers all put in a dollar for a ticket and agree to split the winnings. There have been big Powerball jackpot winners in office pools in Pennsylvania, New York and Indiana.
Think about it.
Instead of having one or two Powerball jackpot tickets for yourself, you can get in on the action for dozens, maybe hundreds, of tickets. More tickets means more chances of getting the winning numbers. Of course, it's a good idea to set-up a lottery pool contract in case you win big. It's always a surprise when people hit a Powerball jackpot, but no one is surprised when someone tries to cheat others out of their money. Take the story of Americo Lopes, a construction worker in a lottery pool who hit a $24 million jackpot and tried to claim it was from the winning numbers on a ticket he bought outside of the lottery pool. (Happy ending: His co-workers sued and won the case.) A $360 million Powerball jackpot will do crazy things to some people, so it's best to protect yourself with some simple rules for a lottery pool.
What about playing the numbers themselves? Are there any strategies that might work? Yes, actually.
This video is bursting with good tips for picking the winning numbers for that $360 million Powerball jackpot. For starters, variety is the key to winning. Pick a mix of numbers in the low range (1-27) and the high range (28-59). What numbers are best? There is no exact science as to which numbers are statistically better to play, but recent Powerball jackpots have added up to between 104 and 176 (not including the bonus ball). Granted, there are thousands of ways to make those sums but it gives you a guideline for winning.
So what numbers should you avoid if you want to win the $360 million Powerball jackpot? Birthdays are a common strategy, which means the numbers 1-31 get played a LOT. It doesn't mean you can't win, but if you play birthday numbers don't be surprised if you have to split your $360 million Powerball jackpot with a bunch of other people. (Who knows? Maybe you'll become millionaire birthday friends!)
Here are the winning numbers for the Powerball jackpot on Saturday:
6-13-19-23-43 and the bonus ball was 16.