The winning numbers to the largest Powerball drawing in history: 05 – 16 – 22 – 23 – 29 and Powerball 06.
Lottery officials confirmed early today that there are two winning tickets — one sold in Arizona, the other in Missouri.
The winners will split a $579.9 million jackpot, which went up nearly $30 million before Wednesday night’s drawing. The jackpot jumped up from half a billion dollars on Wednesday, according to Powerball officials. The new jackpot carries a cash value of $379.8 million before taxes.
Arizona lottery officials said early this morning they would announce where that state’s ticket was sold during a news conference later in the day.
The jackpot had rolled over 16 consecutive times without a winner, prompting Americans to go on a ticket-buying spree in the run-up to the drawing. At one point, tickets were selling at a rate of 130,000 a minute nationwide – about six times the volume from a week ago.
In addition, Powerball officials said that eight people won $2 million prizes and 58 other ticketholders won $1 million.
As lottery official Sue Dooley notes, tickets matching all five of the white balls in the record $580 million Powerball drawing, can be cashed in for $1 million in prize money.
Although this Powerball jackpot is a big one, it’s not the largest lottery prize ever. That mark is held by the $656 million Mega Millions jackpot that was split by three ticket buyers earlier this year. The previous biggest Powerball prize was $365 million in 2006, shared by several ConAgra Foods workers in Lincoln, Neb.
Powerball is played across 42 states, plus Washington, D.C., and the Virgin Islands.
As for the winner or winners: All but five states — Delaware, Kansas, Maryland, North Dakota and Ohio — require the lottery to release the winning names to anyone who asks, according to the Powerball site.
There were no Powerball winners for Saturday’s drawing, in which $325 million was up for grabs. The winning numbers Saturday were 22-32-37-44-50 with Powerball 34, according to the Powerball lottery’s website. There were 10 winners of $1 million and one winner of $2 million.
A sign outside the One Stop Mart in Chicago shows the winning amounts for lottery games including the $550 million for the Powerball jackpot on Wednesday. The jackpot later increased by another $30 million. A single Powerball winner would get a lump sum payment of about $379.8 million before taxes.
The huge jackpot has brought a flood of ticket sales. “It’s been crazy,” the manager of a 7-Eleven convenience store in Westminster, Colo., that sold 2,000 tickets in 11 hours on Tuesday, told Reuters.
Ticket buyers are not only dreaming of living large, but already brewing ways in which they might quit their job.
“I was thinking maybe I should hire a marching band to help me (quit),” Joe Cooke of Illinois told Reuters, after buying $50 in Powerball tickets Wednesday morning.
Cooke, 29, fields customer service calls for a financial institution, which he describes as listening to “rich, mean people” complaining all day, Reuters reported.
At a downtown Detroit convenience store, Ceejay Johnson purchased five Powerball tickets. If she strikes it rich, the analyst from Southfield, Mich., said she would buy a home for her sister in Florida. Then she would “go into hiding” and take care of her family.
“And the IRS,” she added.