Eh? Powerball fever is hot north of the border
Lottery fever has gone international as eager ticket-holders around the world await tonight's $440 million Powerball drawing.
Spokesmen for theLotter, a London-based online ticket messenger service, said the Powerball fever that sparks lines at convenience stores across the U.S. anytime the jackpot swells spread north of the border last year where the company counted a 60 percent uptick in U.S. lottery sales to Canadians in 2017 over 2016.
“This is remarkable because it was a year when U.S. jackpots were much lower than 2016 when Powerball set a $2 billion (in Canadian dollars) jackpot record,” theLotter spokesman Austin Weaver said.
He said online sales to Canadians for tonight's Powerball drawing are expected to set a strong start for the new year in Canada, which has become theLotter's largest market for U.S. lottery ticket sales.
The company has an office in Oregon where tickets for buyers around the world are purchased, scanned and stored. It boasts it has sold winning tickets to U.S. lotteries that created lottery millionaires in Canada, El Salvador, Russia, Ukraine, Australia and Panama.
If Powerball fever subsides with a winning number, players can always look forward to Friday's Mega Millions lottery drawing. That jackpot is projected to grow to $418 million by then.
But don't get excited just yet. The odds of winning are infinitesimal — one in 302.6 million for Mega Millions, one in 292.2 million for Powerball.