New Jersey ticket wins $422m Powerball jackpot, sixth-largest in US history

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A single ticket sold in New Jersey matched all six numbers in Saturday night's drawing for the US$338.3 million (S$422 million) Powerball jackpot, lottery officials said. It was the 13th drawing held in the days since a Virginia man won a US$217 million jackpot on Feb 6.

Thirteen other tickets worth US$1 million each matched all but the final Powerball number on Saturday night. Those tickets were sold in New Jersey and 10 other states.

The New Jersey Lottery said on Sunday that details about the winning ticket would be released on Monday, declining to reveal where it had been purchased and whether anyone had immediately come forward. It was the sixth largest jackpot in US history.

A lump sum payout would be US$221 million after taxes are taken out.

No one had won the Powerball jackpot since early last month, when Mr Dave Honeywell in Virginia bought the winning ticket and elected a cash lump sum for his US$217 million jackpot.

The largest Powerball jackpot ever came in at US$587.5 million in November. The winning numbers were picked on two different tickets - one by a couple in Missouri and the other by an Arizona man - and the jackpot was split.

Nebraska still holds the record for the largest Powerball jackpot won on a single ticket - US$365 million. That jackpot was won by eight workers at a Lincoln, Nebraska, meatpacking plant in February 2006.

Powerball is played in 42 states, Washington, D.C., and the US Virgin Islands. The chance of matching all five numbers and the Powerball number is about 1 in 175 million.

Powerball said on its website that the game is played every Wednesday and Saturday night when five white balls are drawn from a drum of 59 balls and one red ball is picked from a drum with 35 red balls. It added that winners of the Powerball jackpot can elect to be paid out over 29 years at a percentage set by the game's rules - or in a lump sum cash payment.