Powerball jackpot climbs to $1.4 billion

Powerball jackpot

The jackpot for Wednesday’s Powerball drawing has climbed to a staggering $1.4 billion.

On Saturday night the drawing failed to produce a winner for the 19th straight drawing in a row, allowing the jackpot to increase beyond $1 billion for the first time in US history.

The next drawing will be Wednesday night at 11 pm ET.

The Powerball reached into the top 10 largest of all time on January 3, 2016 when it hit $400 million.

With so much money at stake, millions of Americans in the 44 states where the lottery takes place, flocked to convenience stores for their chance to take part in the life changing event.

The Texas Lottery reported that $5,838,152 in Powerball tickets were sold in a one-hour period on Saturday, and the jackpot reached about $950 million ahead of Saturday’s drawing.

The current cash payout is $868 million. A ticket holder would only get $1.4 billion if he took the payout in the form of an annual payment.

Experts suggest taking the cash payout, which can easily turn into more than $1.4 billion with compounding interest.

The odds of winning are 1 in 292 million.

Last February, when the jackpot hit $564 million, the odds were 1 in 175 million. The lottery commission decided to change the odds in order to allow lottery prizes to climb.

Powerball is sold in 44 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.