$500 million Powerball jackpot is 5th largest in US history

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Powerball jackpot has climbed to $500 million, making Wednesday night's drawing the fifth largest prize in U.S. history.

It's been more than two months since someone won the Powerball jackpot, so the prize has been gradually growing from its $40 million starting point.

The last time Powerball grew nearly so large was February 2014.

Because of strong sales, lottery officials Wednesday raised the estimated jackpot from $485 million to $500 million.

Lottery officials are quick to point out that the game is for fun and a chance to dream. They note the chance of winning a Powerball jackpot is about 1 in 175 million.

Powerball revenue has been down slightly during a drought of jackpots, but officials say this big prize has caused sales to surge.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press modified.
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