Long Odds In Powerball Jackpots

With those huge Powerball jackpots, do the odds of winning change substantially between buying $1 and $5 in tickets? —Dustin Ivanic, Gilbert, Ariz.

Unlike a raffle, with Powerball your chance of winning isn't affected by how many tickets are sold. So if you get a $5 ticket with five different number combos, you're exactly five times as likely to win. But the probability of hitting is still astronomically small. (Let's face it, there's not much difference between 1 in 50 million and 5 in 50 million.) Also, since the big prize encourages people to play, the odds that you'll end up having to share the jackpot greatly increase. —Sally Atkinson

Long Odds In Powerball Jackpots | Culture