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Powerball jackpot reaches $500 million, 6th largest US ever

Powerball lottery tickets sit on a store counter in the Manhattan borough of New York January 5, 2016.
Andrew Kelly | Reuters

The estimated jackpot for Wednesday night's Powerball drawing has hit $500 million, making it the sixth largest lottery prize ever in the U.S.

If a winning ticket is sold, the winner could select $306 million in cash, before taxes are deducted, or the full jackpot in an annuity paid out over 29 years.

The jackpot value was boosted from $450 million earlier in the day due to strong ticket sales, according to Powerball's press release. However, it still has room to reach the record $656 million jackpot in a Mega Millions drawing in March 2012. The largest Powerball prize was a $590.5 million jackpot won by a Florida woman in May 2013.

The odds of landing this jackpot? One in 292.2 million.

The drawing is at 10:59 p.m. ET Wednesday.

Powerball is played 44 states as well as the Washington, D.C., the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

— The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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