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US lottery jackpot soars to £895 million

No ticket matched all six numbers in a record US Powerball jackpot of nearly 950 million dollars (£654 million), meaning it will soar to 1.3 billion dollars (£895 million) for Wednesday's draw.

The winning numbers were 32-16-19-57-34 and the Powerball number 13. All six numbers must be correct to win, although the first five can be in any order.

The final size of the jackpot on Saturday was 949.8 million dollars, the largest lottery prize in history. Earlier in the day, the Multi-State Lottery Association had said the jackpot would be 900 million dollars (£619 million).

Since November 4, the Powerball jackpot has grown from its 40 million dollar (£27.5 million) starting point as nobody has won the jackpot.

Such a huge jackpot was just what officials with the Multi-State Lottery Association, which runs the Powerball game, hoped for last autumn when they changed the odds of matching all the numbers, from about one in 175 million to one in 292.2 million.

The tougher odds made the ever-larger prizes inevitable.

The US saw sales of 277 million dollars (£190 million) on Friday alone and more than 400 million dollars £275 million) were expected on Saturday, according to Gary Grief, the executive director of the Texas Lottery.

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