The Powerball lottery jackpot has grown significantly and it’s now at $640 million for Saturday, January 16. The drawing is at 10:59 p.m. Eastern every Wednesday and Saturday. If you match one, two, or three Powerball numbers, how much do you win? Here is everything you need to know about the rules.
If You Match One Number, Here’s What You Win
Unfortunately, you don’t win much if you only match one Powerball number, and whether you win anything at all depends on which color you match.
If you only matched one white number, then you haven’t won anything.
If you matched only the red ball (the Powerball, which is the last number drawn), then you’ll win $4. You can put that money into buying two more Powerball tickets! It’s worth noting that you win more matching one red ball in Powerball than you do matching one yellow ball in Mega Millions (which only wins you $2 in that scenario.)
If You Match Two Numbers, Here’s What You Win
If you match two white Powerball numbers, then unfortunately you won’t walk away with any money, according to Powerball’s rules.
If you match a white ball and the red Powerball, then you’ll walk away with $4, which is the same amount you win if you match just one red ball (so that extra white ball you matched doesn’t really count for anything.)
If You Match Three Numbers, Here’s What You Win
If you match two white balls and the red Powerball, then you’ll win $7. This is the same amount you’ll win if you match two white balls and the red Powerball ($7). So the rules aren’t necessarily intuitive. For two numbers, the red Powerball gets you more money. But if you’re matching three numbers, whether you match the red Powerball or not doesn’t make a difference in your final earnings.
Other Ways to Win
If you match four numbers, you’ll win $100 no matter what. So if you match four white balls or three white balls and one red Powerball, you’ll still win $100.
What if you match five numbers? If you match four white balls and a red Powerball, then you’ll win $50,000. If you match five white balls, then you’ll win $1 million. Once again, the rules aren’t super intuitive here and having a red Powerball as one of your five matching numbers actually leaves you winning less.
If you match all five white balls and the red ball, then you’ll win the big jackpot.
How the Power Play Works
If you bought a ticket with the Power Play option (in states where this is available), then it will increase some non-jackpot prizes by up to ten times as much, depending on what the Power Play drawing is and how many numbers you matched. Note that this is a little more complicated than the Megaplier, according to Powerball’s rules, because not every winning is a straight multiplier. Here’s how it works.
If you match anywhere from one red Powerball up to four numbers plus the red Powerball, then your winnings will be multiplied by the Power Play. So if you were supposed to win $100 from matching four numbers, and your Power Play is 10X, you’ll win $1,000 (which is 10 times $100.) This applies to any win from $50,000 (which is matching four white balls and the Powerball) on down.
It changes above that for the last two sets of prizes. So if you match five white numbers and used the Power Play, your win increases from $1 million to $2 million no matter which Power Play is drawn.
If you win the jackpot, you win the jackpot and the Power Play does not affect that.
The odds of winning the Powerball are 1 in 292 million, slightly better than the odds of winning Mega Millions which are 1 in 302 million.