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Playing powerplay for PB, downside for lotto corporation??


Just wondering if there was a downside for the lotto corporation when people use powerplay when playing powerball?  I noticed that California does not use powerplay, or where I searched doesn't show powerplay results.

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If there was a downside, they wouldn't offer it.

California is pari-mutuel (prizes paid based on funds in the pool, no guarantees). This conflicts with Powerplay which has guaranteed set prizes. That's why they don't have it. Same for Mega Million's Megaplier.

Jon D's avatar - calotterylogo
Jon D
In response to bigbear29

The profit margin is the same on the base PowerBall bet and the PowerPlay side bet: 50%.

Meaning the lottery pays out 50% of total wagers in prizes for the base $2 PB bet, and also pays out 50% of total wagers in prizes for the $1 PP side bet.(in the long term) But that in itself isn't the deciding factor. The lottery offers a mix of various games with a mix of different profit margins, some better for them, some worse.

The real reason Cali doesn't off Powerplay (and Megaplier) is it would be too much confusion and headache. There isn't really a technical reason why they can't offer some form of Powerplay. It's just complicated by the fact that all Cali lotto games are pari-mutuel, with variable prizes based on a percentage of the total amount wagered, divided by number of winners.

They could do the same for Powerplay, but it would be too confusing for players and generate too many questions and complaints compared to the fixed prizes offered by the other states. So to avoid that (downside) they just chose not to offer it at all.

In response to bigbear29

The odds of PowerPlay matching one of the eight secondary prizes is the same and the original bet pays part of the winnings. If you match three numbers, PowerPlay adds another $7 to the $7 prize. Only 3.14% of the tickets are going to win something so the house isn't worried.

And don't forget there is a payoff limit on the 5 + 0 prize if you're playing multiple tickets on one combination.

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