NEW JERSEY — A Powerball ticket could land a New Jersey resident the largest lottery prize in state history. The jackpot soared to $1.2 billion for Wednesday night’s drawing, approaching national records and more-than-doubling the Garden State’s greatest lottery payout.
The jackpot increased after nobody matched all six numbers in Monday night’s drawing for a $999.3 million prize. The winning numbers were 13, 19, 36, 39, 59 and then a red power ball of 13.
Wednesday’s drawing is at 10:59 p.m.
If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, call 1-800-GAMBLER®.
Lottery jackpots have skyrocketed in recent years, with gaming officials adjusting rules and ticket prices to pump up the top prizes. The most recent change came in August, when Powerball officials added an additional drawing day — going from two per week to three — to boost sales and build larger prizes.
If someone wins Wednesday’s jackpot, they could receive the $1.2 billion through an annuity paid over 29 years. But most winners opt for cash, and the cash prize will total an estimated $596 billion for the next drawing.
Even the cash prize exceeds the largest lottery jackpot in New Jersey history, when a participant’s ticket won a $533 million jackpot in 2018, according to lotto.com. The winner, Richard Wahl, took the cash option of $324 million before relocating to Florida. After federal and state taxes were removed, Wahl ended up with nearly $175 million.
But New Jerseyans will compete against Powerball players in 44 other states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Nobody has hit all six numbers since Aug. 3, with the Powerball going 38 draws without a jackpot winner. The odds of winning are 1 in 292.2 million. For perspective, the odds of being struck by lightning are less than 1 in 1 million, according to the CDC.
The largest lottery jackpot in U.S. history was a $1.586 billion prize. Three tickets — from California, Florida and Tennessee — earned won the jackpot in the Jan. 13, 2016, Powerball drawing. The massive Mega Million prize from earlier this year reached $1.337 billion when an Illinois ticketholder got lucky during July 29’s contest.
Eleven New Jersey Lottery tickets generated at least $50,000 from Monday’s drawing by matching four of the five white balls. Two of the tickets were purchased with Power Play, multiplying the prizes to $150,000. Here were New Jersey’s biggest winners on Monday:
- Bergen County ($150,000): 7-Eleven, 29 County Rd., Tenafly
- Passaic County ($150,000): Jackpocket, 355 Warwick Tpke., Hewitt
- Burlington County ($50,000): Acme, 175 Route 70, Medford
- Camden County ($50,000): 7-Eleven, 316 Cuthbert Blvd., Westmont
- Hudson County ($50,000): Lotto.com, 111 Town Square Pl., Jersey City
- Hudson County ($50,000): Canela Deli & Grocery, 5200 Hudson Ave., West New York
- Hudson County ($50,000): Extra Grocery & Deli, 56 Grant Ave., Kearny
- Monmouth County ($50,000): Welsh Farms, 300 Bay Ave., Highlands
- Morris County ($50,000): Shoprite Liquors of Rockaway, 439 Route 46 East, Dover
- Morris County ($50,000): Mine Hill Spartan LLC, 274 Route 46, Mine Hill
- Ocean County ($50,000): Wine Center of Manchester, 1023 Route 70 West, Manchester
Overall, 263,914 New Jersey players won an estimated $1,445,317 in prizes ranging from $4 to $300.
The Associated Press contributed reporting.