Powerball jackpot rolls over to world record $1.3 billion lottery rollover

No one has won the jackpot since the prize money started at $40 million on 4 November

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The Independent US

America awaits its first lottery billionaire, after the Powerball jackpot rollover hit a world-record figure of $1.3 billion (£895.4 million).

No one won Saturday's $949.8 million (£654.2 million) jackpot on 9 January, already the biggest in US history.

Strong ticket sales, fuelled by excitement over the enormous sum, have driven the prize money up ahead of the next draw on Wednesday.

Entrants in California were spending $2.8 million (£1.9 million) an hour on $2 tickets for the multi-state lottery before 9 January’s draw, compared to usual daily sales of $1 million (£689,000), said California Lottery spokesman Michael Bond.

The current jackpot started at $40 million (£27.6 million) on 4 November, meaning 13 January’s draw will be its 19th rollover.

The cash value of the jackpot is an estimated $806 million (£555.2 million), after federal and state taxes. The winner can choose 30 annual payments, or a lump sum.

A record-breaking £66 million jackpot was won in the UK's National Lottery on 9 January, which pales in comparison to the current US prize.

The odds of winning the UK jackpot are more than six times higher than those of winning the US Powerball jackpot however, at one in 45 million compared to one in 292.2 million.

The winner’s numbers must match those on the five white balls drawn from a pool of 69, together with the number on the red Powerball, which is drawn from a pool of 29.

The ticket can match numbers from the white balls in the any order, but the final number on the ticket must be the Powerball number.

The Powerball lottery can be played in 44 of the US’s 50 states and three US territories.

The winning balls are drawn on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 10.59pm (3.59am UK time).