Whether you play for fun or as a way of life, a lottery can be a great way to win some extra cash. In fact, the sales for the lottery in the United States totaled over $91 billion in 2016. And this is not even including the huge jackpots that are available for certain lottery games.
U.S. sales totaled over $91 billion in 2016
During the past fiscal year, the United States lottery sales topped $91 billion. The industry transferred $26 billion to the government and $57 billion in prizes.
Most lottery tickets are purchased by lower-income households. However, there are people who gamble at all income levels. Research conducted by the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism found that retailers in lower-income ZIP codes disproportionately sell lottery tickets.
The industry uses digital advertising to target likely gamblers. The lottery’s digital marketing team claims that the ability to personalize their marketing pitch makes it more effective. But the truth is that lottery agencies are not required to be honest about what they are selling.
Powerball jackpot surges to $1.6 billion in 2018
During the first three months of the year, the Powerball jackpot was averaging more than a million dollars per day. It sparked a national ticket buying frenzy. And, after 40 consecutive drawings without a winner, it broke the billion-dollar mark.
The odds of winning the Powerball jackpot are one in 292.2 million. However, the advertised prize is an annuity that is paid out over 30 years.
The prize is the second largest in U.S. lottery history, trailing only the $1.586 billion Powerball jackpot paid out in January 2016. However, the prize amount has increased dramatically in recent months as the Fed has increased interest rates.
MUSL made lottery smaller prizes easier to win
MUSL (Multi-State Lottery Association) runs Powerball and other lottery games for more than 45 states. The association also runs the aforementioned Mega Millions lottery. The aforementioned mega lottery carries a hefty price tag for the consumer, but it’s the largest lottery in the United States. The jackpots in some states are worth millions of dollars.
In the grand scheme of things, there are only five states that don’t participate in the multistate game. This gives Florida a shot at the Powerball (and the aforementioned Mega Millions) as well as other nifty follicles. The aforementioned mega lottery has been expanding its reach across the country with a steady stream of states joining each year.
Taking your winnings in one lump sum or annuities?
Taking your winnings in one lump sum or annuities has its benefits and its drawbacks. A lump sum can be spent immediately, while annuities can be paid off over time. You also have to weigh the tax implications of each option. If you win the lottery, chances are you will have to pay federal taxes on the winnings. Taking your winnings in one lump sum could be the best way to go.
Taking your winnings in one lump sum might be a worthy endeavor, especially if you are the kind of person who has trouble sticking to a budget. A lump sum could be used for anything from debt elimination to buying a new home.
Avoid scams and jealousy
Taking part in the lottery can be an expensive endeavor. Luckily, you can avoid lottery scams. There are even alternative forms of gambling if you happen to lose your lucky ticket.
The best way to avoid lottery scams is to always be on the lookout. Never give out your personal details to strangers. If you do decide to play the lottery, be sure to check the legitimacy of any website that asks for your hard earned cash.
The best way to avoid lottery scams while still enjoying the lottery is to play the lottery in a location that you know you can trust. This is particularly important if you live in the U.S. where you cannot participate in lotteries run by foreign governments.
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Unless otherwise stated, the CT Lottery makes no representation or guarantee as to the accuracy of information on the website. All information is provided “as is” and CT Lottery disclaims all warranties, including, but not limited to, implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, and non-infringement.
CT Lottery also does not warrant the effectiveness or timeliness of the services or the Content. The CT Lottery is not liable for lost or stolen mail. This includes winning tickets and prizes.
CT Lottery has a number of responsible gambling initiatives. These efforts include educational campaigns and materials on how to gamble safely, as well as programs to assist problem gamblers. A number of clinical and social service experts are available in Connecticut to help address problem gambling.