Powerball jackpot soars to $900 million hours before the drawing

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(AP) –  The Powerball jackpot has increased to $900 million just hours before the drawing.  The drawing will be held at 9:59 p.m. CST Saturday.

Lottery officials are expecting more than $400 million in ticket sales on Saturday alone.

Lottery officials say that a winner would have the option of being paid the full amount through annual payments over the next 29 years or opting for a $558 million lump-sum cash payout.

Lottery ticket sales have skyrocketed since Wednesday, when no one won an estimated $500 million jackpot.

Gary Grief, President of the multi-state Powerball Lottery believes that the chances of no one hitting all five initial numbers and the Powerball number is growing slim because by the time sales close Saturday nigh, officials estimate around 75% of all possible combinations “will have been wagered on.”

Officials claim that if no one wins this drawing, the next jackpot will be approximately $1.3 billion.

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