World-record $1.6 billion jackpot at stake in Mega Millions lottery

- A world-record $1.6 billion jackpot will be at stake for Tuesday night's multi-state Mega Millions lottery drawing.

A ticket with all six numbers has not been sold for the past 25 drawings.

The previous record was $1.586 billion for the Jan. 13, 2016, Powerball drawing.

The odds of matching all five numbers and the Mega number is 1 in 302,575,350, according to the California Lottery.

The Mega Millions game is played in 44 states, the District of Columbia and U.S. Virgin Islands.

Buying tickets at a store where winning tickets have been sold in the past will not increase a purchaser's chance of winning a jackpot, according to USC mathematics professor Ken Alexander.

"The chance that a given place will sell a winning lottery ticket is just related to how many tickets they sell,'' Alexander said.

However, players wanting a better chance of avoiding sharing the jackpot should choose numbers that aren't selected as often, Alexander said. Lottery players frequently choose the date of their birthdays as one of their numbers, so numbers higher than 31 would be played less, he said.

The Powerball jackpot also has climbed. It's up to an estimated $620 million for Wednesday's drawing. That would make it the fifth-largest jackpot in U.S. history.

 

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