The jackpot for Friday's Mega Millions drawing is now at $1.35 billion.

 Are these life-changing prizes just a mirage?

Winners who took their winnings in cash in August of 2020 would have forfeited about 19% of the entire value of the prize by doing so.

 However, if the winner of Friday's $1.35 billion jackpot chooses to cash out all of their winnings at once.

They would only get around $708 million before taxes. This is little more than half of the amount that was originally stated.

Carolyn Becker, who serves as the communications director for the California State Lottery, was quoted as saying.

"We're absolutely not attempting to mislead anyone."

According to Becker, what is occurring is that increasing interest rates are contributing to the expanding gap between the jackpot and the amount that may be cashed out.

When a winner opts to receive the whole amount, which, according to the regulations of the lottery.

The money from the prize is invested in U.S. Treasury bonds by the lottery organisers. 

 Lottery officials now have greater buying power as a result of the Federal Reserve's campaign against inflation.

Therefore, the overall projected value of the reward, after taking into account the value of the assets, is larger.

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