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Mega Millions hits $550 million on Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2013

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UPDATE: Mega Millions rolls up to $550 Million for Tuesday's Drawing

The winning numbers were 19, 24, 26, 27, 70 with Megaball 12 on Dec. 13, 2013. Next drawing will be held on Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2013 with an estimated jackpot worth $550 Million since there was no winner on Friday the 13th. Drawing days are Tuesday and Friday at 10:00 p.m. CT.

Mega Millions is in the spotlight for lottery-winner hopefuls on the last Friday the 13th of 2013, according to NBC News and a host of other media outlets on Friday. The multi-state Mega Millions lottery jackpot is estimated to be $400 million.

The $400 million jackpot is the second-largest jackpot ever for the game. The game has recently incorporated major changes to entice players who only buy into the game when the jackpots are ultra-huge. Besides being the second-largest Mega Million jackpot ever, the Friday the 13th Mega Millions jackpot is the fifth largest lottery jackpot of any kind in the United States ever – say officials associated with the game.

The Mega Millions jackpot has been increasing since Oct. 1, and the money has rolled over 20 times without a single winner. That is why the estimated jackpot is up to $500 million. For those who want their winnings now, the cash payout before taxes comes to $216 million.

The Mega Millions game changed in October, and the change was designed to increase the jackpots. Of the changes, the biggest change was the lowering of the odds of winning the jackpot – which, naturally, has caused the game to have fewer winners and ore rollovers of the cash.

Mega Millions expanded its gaming beyond the 12 original states that played to match Powerball’s 43 states, as well as the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Additionally, in October of this year, the $1-a-ticket Mega Millions made five of the six numbers needed for a jackpot to win range from 1 to 75 instead of its former 1 to 56. The gold Mega Millions ball is now from 1 to 15 instead of 1 to 46. With the changes in numbers of balls, the odds of winning have got from about 1 in 176 million to about 1 in 259 million.

Thus far, players have responded positively to the larger jackpots by more money coming into the game.

Mega Millions, like Powerball, have increased secondary prizes of $1 million and more. Since late October of this year, 30 people have won the $1 million secondary prize – which includes two winners that scored $5 million and $3 million jackpots.

The largest Mega Millions jackpot was $656 million which was divided by three winners in April, 2012. The winners played in Illinois, Kansas, and Maryland.

Mega Millions is an American multi-jurisdictional lottery game. The game may be played in Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Colorado, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, the US Virgin Islands, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

The drawings take place every Tuesday and Friday.

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