No one won Saturday’s record jackpot of nearly $950 million in the multi-state Powerball lottery, officials said, driving the haul for a winning ticket in the next draw to $1.3 billion, lottery officials said.
Millions of Americans anxiously checked their tickets for the winning combination of six numbers – 32, 16, 19, 57, 34 with a Powerball number of 13.
“No Powerball jackpot winner,” the Texas Lottery announced on Twitter hours after the numbers were drawn.
“Since nobody won tonight’s staggering $947.8 million jackpot, it has rolled to an estimated $1.3 billion for January 13,” said a statement from officials in California, one of the 44 states, together with Washington D.C. and two U.S. territories, that participate in Powerball.
The grand prize for Powerball has climbed steadily for weeks after repeated drawings produced no big winners. This week ticket purchases surged along with the size of the pot, driving the prize beyond the $900 million reported earlier.
The grand prize in Saturday’s drawing was worth $558 million for a winner choosing an immediate cash payout instead of annual payments over 29 years, according to lottery officials in California, one of the participating states.
The prize, which rises with every drawing in which the winning series of six numbers is not won, ranked as the largest jackpot for any lottery in North American history. With almost unimaginable riches at stake, many Americans who normally shun lotteries joined the long lines of people buying tickets at retail stores across the country.
Dony Elias, 26, an attendant at Stardust Liquor in Los Angeles, said 300 customers picked up tickets for Powerball on Friday night at his store. Elias admitted to buying a ticket for himself, something he said he had never done before.
And like many other players, he had given some thought to what he would do with the cash – “I would take a trip to the moon.”
California normally sees Powerball sales of $1 million a day, but on Saturday morning sales were $2.8 million an hour, said California Lottery spokesman Mike Bond.