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February 23, 2024


Hi, Dennis. There has never been a set percentage for the cash vs. annuity amount of the jackpots. The cash amount has always been based upon sales in the game, and the annuity amount is impacted by interest rates. When interest rates are higher, as they are now, it takes a smaller amount of cash to achieve an annuity amount. That's because when the money is invested in securities to make the annuity payments over time, higher interest rates will produce larger returns over time. What you are seeing now with the jackpots is the impact of today's higher interest rates.

Why has the cash payout for the Powerball and Mega Million jackpots been reduced from around 51% to around 47%? The cash payout used to be a little higher. Just curious.

Hello, Danny. You are correct that gathering video-camera footage from the store where a big winning ticket was purchased is a standard part of the Iowa Lottery's security procedures. The footage is one of the details that the lottery uses to verify it is paying the prize to the correct person when the ticket is presented, so the footage is not released publicly. You also are correct that a winning ticket does have to be presented to the lottery for a prize to be paid. The winning ticket is legally the instrument from which the claim is made.

Can’t they go back on the cameras at the store and maybe see who purchased the ticket.I don’t get it because they sure can figure out anything else so why can’t they pin point who bought it I think it’s so stupid that they can’t figure out who bought the ticket it’s about the stupidest thing ever what if I bought it and I lost it they need to register every ticket sold by airing. When purchasing a ticket because we are only human people do lose things you know it it’s something that needs to be done because I could have bought that ticket and I could have lost it and. Ow I’m screwed because I lost it its stupid not to have a way to tell who is buying tickets for the Iowa Lottery come on and get with the program and protect the person from losing his winning a once in a life time experience let’s do it Iowa lottery just do it!!

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As the lottery’s vice president of external relations, I’m a member of the senior management team at the Iowa Lottery, where I’ve worked since 1999. I’ve spent my years at the lottery learning as much as I can about all the ins and outs of the lottery industry. I’ll put that knowledge to work here so I can share the behind-the-scenes details with you!