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Powerball Prizes and Odds

The Powerball lottery matrix had undergone several changes since it started in 1992. Consequently, the prizes and odds have also been changing through out the years. This page lists the two most recent data which we will refer to as the new and the old formats. The new format is valid for draws starting on January 18, 2012, while the old format is for prior draws.

The main difference between the new and the old formats is, in fact, the price of a Powerball ticket being raised from $1 to $2. The prize structure is accordingly changed with an emphasis on raising the starting jackpot prize from $20 million to $40 million; subsequent jackpots will be higher depending on the sales. Second prize has also been raised from $200,000 to $1 million, however, lower tier prizes essentially remain unchanged. PowerPlay multipliers will not be drawn anymore. A detailed difference between the new and old Powerball structure is given further down.

New Powerball Prize Structure and Odds

Valid for draws of January 18, 2012 and later
MatchPrize Without Power PlayPrize With Power PlayOdds
5-of-5 + PBJackpot: $40,000,000 +Jackpot: $40,000,000 +1 in 175,223,510
5-of-5$1,000,000$2,000,0001 in 5,153,633
4-of-5 + PB$10,000$40,0001 in 648,976
4-of-5$100$2001 in 19,088
3-of-5 + PB$100$2001 in 12,245
3-of-5$7$141 in 361
2-of-5 + PB$7$141 in 707
1-of-5 + PB$4$121 in 111
Only PB$4$121 in 56

Note that matching 1 or 2 numbers without matching the Power Ball (Red ball) does not win anything.

With a $2 ticket the player wins the prizes listed under "Prize Without Power Play" column. However, the player has the option of adding Power Play for additional $1, in which case the prizes listed under "Prize With Power Play" column will apply. Power Play does not affect the jackpot prize.

The jackpot starts at $40 million and grows by at least $10 million at every draw where there is no jackpot winner.

Old Powerball Prize Structure and Odds

Valid for draws prior to January 18, 2012
Prize WithoutPrize With Power Play
MatchPower Playx 2x 3x 4x 5Odds
5-of-5 + PB$20,000,000 +$20,000,000 +1 in 195,249,054
5-of-5$200,000$1,000,0001 in 5,138,133
4-of-5 + PB$10,000$20,000$30,000$40,000$50,0001 in 723,145
4-of-5$100$200$300$400$5001 in 19,030
3-of-5 + PB$100$200$300$400$5001 in 13,644
3-of-5$7$14$21$28$351 in 359
2-of-5 + PB$7$14$21$28$351 in 787
1-of-5 + PB$4$8$12$16$201 in 123
Only PB$3$6$9$12$151 in 62

Note that you do not win anything by matching 1 or 2 numbers without matching the Power Ball (Red ball)

Note also that lower tier prizes, except the second prize, are multiplied by the Power Play number (1 to 5). The second prize (5-of-5 match) will always be $1,000,000 cash, irrespective of the Power Play. All set prizes and Power Play prizes, including the 5-of-5 match prize, may be reduced if claims exceed the available prize fund.

What changed with the new Powerball structure?

Here are the main differences between the new and old Powerball structure:
  • The cost of a Powerball ticket is raised from $1 to $2.
  • The new Powerball matrix is 5/59 + 1/35 instead of 5/59 + 1/39. That is, the Red Ball numbers are reduced by 4 while the White Ball numbers remain the same.
  • As a consequence of the new matrix, the odds of winning the jackpot are now 1 in 175,223,510 instead of 1 in 195,249,054. The odds of lower tier matches are also reduced.
  • No PowerPlay number is drawn. So, the Power Play option pays a fixed amount at every draw.
  • The jackpot starts at $40 million instead of $20 million, and increases by at least $10 million there after when there is no jackpot winner.
  • The second prize is $1 million without PowerPlay instead of $200,000. With PowerPlay, it is $2 million instead of $1 million.
  • The third and lower prizes are unchanged except that matching the PB only gets you $4 instead of $3.
  • The general effect of the PowerPlay is somewhat reduced since none of the prizes are multiplied by 5, and only the third prize is multiplied by 4. The rest of the prizes are multiplied only by 2 except the last two which are multiplied by 3.

Claiming Powerball Prizes

Usually Powerball prizes of less than $600 can be claimed at any retailer. However, every state has its own rules for claiming lottery prizes. Please see your state's "How to claim prizes" page on its official web site.

Also, how long you have to collect a Powerball prize depends on the state where you bought your tickets. The time period for claiming a prize ranges from 90 days to 1 year from the draw date; most states have a 180 day period to claim prizes.

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