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Where is the best place to win the Powerball?

The Powerball is one of the most popular and widely played lottery games in the United States. With jackpots that can swell to over $1 billion, it’s no surprise that Powerball creates such excitement and interest from coast to coast. But with Powerball being played in 45 states, as well as Washington D.C., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, is there one place that has proven to be luckier than the rest when it comes to winning the big prize?

Which States Have Had the Most Powerball Jackpot Winners?

When looking at where Powerball winners are most likely to hit it big, the best place to start is with the states that have had the highest number of jackpot winners historically. Powerball jackpot prizes start at $40 million and grow based on ticket sales and interest in the current jackpot. Here are the states with the most first-prize Powerball jackpot winners of all time:

State Number of Jackpot Winners
Indiana 39
Missouri 31
Minnesota 22
Kentucky 19
New Jersey 17

Based solely on the number of historical jackpot winners, the midwestern states of Indiana, Missouri, Minnesota, and Kentucky stand out as having had the most luck in hitting Powerball’s top prize. Indiana leads the pack with 39 jackpot winners, while Missouri has had 31 and Minnesota 22. New Jersey’s 17 big winners round out the top 5.

Other Notable States for Powerball Winners

In addition to the states that lead the way in terms of total jackpot winners, there are some other states that stand out for their Powerball winning streaks:

  • Arizona – 11 jackpot wins, including a record $587.5 million jackpot split by two winners in 2017
  • Louisiana – 10 jackpot wins since joining Powerball in 1995
  • Pennsylvania – 9 jackpot wins since 2002
  • Wisconsin – 8 jackpot wins since 1992, including a $208 million jackpot in 2006 split by 100 coworkers

While the overall numbers favor the Midwest, these states have shown impressive winning histories in a shorter period of time.

Which State Has Had the Biggest Powerball Jackpot Winners?

In addition to the frequency of jackpot wins, the size of the biggest prizes is also an important factor when considering the luckiest Powerball states. After all, taking home a record-shattering $1 billion+ jackpot is the ultimate dream!

Here are the states that have produced the biggest first-prize Powerball jackpot winners to date:

State Biggest Jackpot
California $1.586 billion (2016)
Wisconsin $768.4 million (2019)
Massachusetts $758.7 million (2017)

California takes the crown for the biggest Powerball jackpot winner, with a world record $1.586 billion shared by 3 lucky winners in January 2016. More recently, a Wisconsin player won a $768.4 million jackpot in March 2019, while a Massachusetts player hit a $758.7 million jackpot just two months earlier. No other states have produced jackpot winners over $500 million.

Notable Powerball Mega Jackpots

Here are some other notable record-breaking Powerball jackpots won in different states:

  • Tennessee – $1.586 billion shared with California and Florida winners (2016)
  • Florida – $1.586 billion shared with California and Tennessee winners (2016)
  • South Carolina – $1.537 billion (2018)
  • Iowa – $687.8 million (2018)

While California had the single biggest prize, runners up Tennessee and Florida were part of that same world record $1.586 billion jackpot. South Carolina and Iowa both enjoyed jackpot wins over $600 million as well.

Which State Sells the Most Powerball Tickets?

Looking at Powerball sales data also gives insight into the luckiest states. After all, to win it you have to play it, so the states selling the most tickets have the most players with a shot. Here are the top 5 Powerball states based on total ticket sales:

State Average Annual Powerball Ticket Sales
California $611 million
Florida $491 million
New York $471 million
Texas $438 million
Pennsylvania $265 million

California takes the top spot by a wide margin, selling over $600 million in Powerball tickets annually. Florida, New York, Texas, and Pennsylvania round out the top 5 in total sales. With so many players in these heavily populated states, there are certainly plenty of opportunities for winners to emerge.

Other High Powerball Sales States

Some other states with impressively high Powerball ticket sales include:

  • North Carolina – $192 million
  • Georgia – $166 million
  • Michigan – $128 million
  • New Jersey – $121 million
  • Ohio – $120 million

The millions of ticket sales in these states generate big revenue for education programs and local retailers that sell Powerball tickets.

Which State Has the Most Powerball Winners Per Capita?

Looking at jackpot winners and ticket sales on a per capita basis also gives perspective on where Powerball luck runs deepest. With some states having much smaller populations, their winning numbers stand out when adjusted for population size. Here are the top 5 Powerball states based on jackpot winners per capita:

State Jackpot Winners Per Million Residents
North Dakota 3.23
South Dakota 2.74
District of Columbia 2.73
West Virginia 2.45
Delaware 2.43

Looking at jackpot wins per capita shows some smaller population states rising to the top. North Dakota, South Dakota, DC, West Virginia, and Delaware all have had over 2 Powerball jackpot winners for every 1 million residents. Their relatively few jackpot prizes spread over small populations push them higher in the rankings.

Other States with High Per Capita Winners

Some other places with an outsized share of jackpot winners based on local populations are:

  • Rhode Island – 2.26 winners per million residents
  • Vermont – 1.86
  • Montana – 1.79
  • Maine – 1.62
  • Iowa – 1.58

When adjusted on a per capita basis, these less populated states have yielded impressive numbers of jackpot winners throughout Powerball history.

Which Major Metros Have Produced the Most Powerball Jackpot Winners?

In addition to ranking entire states, looking specifically at major metro areas can also indicate where Powerball luck may be clustered. Here are the major metropolitan areas that have produced the most jackpot winners:

Metro Area Number of Jackpot Winners
Indianapolis, IN 12
Kansas City, MO 9
St. Louis, MO 8
Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN 7
Portland, OR 6

Midwest cities Indianapolis, Kansas City, St. Louis, and the Twin Cities lead among major metros for producing the highest number of jackpot winners. Portland, Oregon is the only top 5 metro area outside the Midwest.

Other Major Metros with Multiple Jackpot Wins

Some other major metro areas with impressive numbers of jackpot wins include:

  • Detroit, MI – 5 winners
  • Phoenix, AZ – 5 winners
  • Tampa/St. Petersburg, FL – 5 winners
  • Atlanta, GA – 4 winners
  • Cincinnati, OH – 4 winners

Major population centers like Detroit, Phoenix, Tampa, Atlanta, and Cincinnati have also yielded solid numbers of lucky Powerball jackpot winners throughout the years.

Which States Have the Most Powerball Winners Overall?

Looking beyond just the jackpot, there are thousands of smaller Powerball prize winners across all levels every drawing. When including winners of all prize amounts, here are the states with the highest total of Powerball winners historically:

State Total Winners
Missouri 270,471
Pennsylvania 252,951
New York 230,236
New Jersey 225,316
Florida 214,946

Missouri leads the way with over 270,000 total Powerball winners, followed by Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, and Florida. Heavy populations contribute to more overall winners in these states.

Other States with High Total Winners

Some other states with impressive overall winner counts include:

  • California – 212,117 winners
  • Ohio – 204,072 winners
  • Texas – 203,211 winners
  • North Carolina – 157,318 winners
  • Georgia – 156,743 winners

Large states like California, Ohio, Texas, North Carolina, and Georgia have also produced hundreds of thousands of Powerball winners across all prize levels.

Which State Has the Best Luck?: The Verdict

Based on the historical data, the states with the strongest claims as the luckiest Powerball states are:

  • Indiana – With 39 jackpot wins and 12 from just the Indianapolis metro area, the Hoosier state has the strongest Powerball pedigree.
  • Missouri – 31 jackpot wins and a leading 270,471 total winners cement Missouri’s Powerball dominance.
  • Minnesota – 22 jackpot wins including 7 from the Twin Cities make Minnesota a major Powerball winner producer.

While winners can and do emerge from every corner of the country, states like Indiana, Missouri, and Minnesota have proven to be especially fertile ground for Powerball success over the long run. For new players looking to try their hand, buying a ticket in one of these states may just offer a slight edge!

Can Statistics Really Predict the Next Powerball Jackpot Location?

While the historical data points to some states performing better than others in Powerball, every drawing ultimately comes down to pure chance. The numbered balls selected each draw have no memory or preference for states with past wins or high sales. In reality, someone is just as likely to win the jackpot in a state that has never had a jackpot winner before as one that has had dozens of lucky winners.

Powerball outcomes follow a random probability distribution in which each number combination has an equal chance of being selected on any given draw. Over a long period of time, some states will randomly have more luck than others. But those historical wins cannot predict or influence what happens on the next draw. With the right combination of numbers matched, any player in any state can potentially hit the jackpot.

The Only True Advantage is More Tickets Sold

The one area where some states clearly have an advantage, however, is in total tickets sold. The more tickets purchased in a state, the more players there are with a chance at the jackpot. For this reason, states that sell the most Powerball tickets like California, Florida, New York, and Texas have more winners overall. But each ticket still has the same odds of winning.

In the end, Powerball comes down to the luck of the draw. Consistent players in every state have roughly an equal shot at the jackpot if they match the right numbers. Statistics showing past wins reflect random variation rather than any fundamental advantage. But they help identify the states that have enjoyed Powerball success and keep players dreaming of joining the winners list!


Winning a massive Powerball jackpot represents a life-changing stroke of luck that captures the hopes and dreams of players across the country. Where you buy your ticket ultimately does not change the odds or probabilities involved. But the data shows certain states like Indiana, Missouri, Minnesota, and others have consistently produced more winners over Powerball’s history.

For newcomers to the game, buying that first Powerball ticket in a state like Indiana or Missouri where luck has shined in the past may feel like a good omen. But seasoned players know that every drawing is entirely new, and fortune can smile anywhere. In Powerball, all it takes is one lucky ticket, no matter the state, to win it all.