CHICAGO (CBS) -- It's a few hundred million short of the record jackpot, but Wednesday's Powerball payoff of $425 million deserves some serious consideration.
That's for rookies.
You need to know what numbers to play. If you win, you could buy the Washington Post or some other expensive stuff.
Better yet, invest the money, live well and help out some folks instead.
According to USA Mega, the most common "first five" numbers drawn in the past 100 drawings are: 23, 26, 36, 08, 22. Powerball: 16 and 29 (tie).
If you want to play the least common numbers, they are: 51, 47, 37, 15 and (tied) 24, 12, 04. Powerball: The number 30 has not been picked in the past 100 drawings.
But keep in mind, playing these numbers do not change your odds. Whether you choose your own numbers or play a quick pick, the odds are still 1 in 175,223,510 that you'll collect on the jackpot.
Some people also swear by playing the same numbers every time. That finally paid off for one Illinois man recently who won a $6 million Lotto jackpot.
The odds of sharing the prize are more likely as more people play the game.
After you pay 25 percent federal taxes, plus state taxes, your lump sum payout in Illinois would be $171.2 million. In Indiana, you'd collect about $175.3 million, thanks to a lower state income tax rate.
This jackpot ranks No. 4 on the all-time U.S. list.
If you are thinking there have been a lot of big jackpots recently, you are right. The top four jackpots have all been drawn roughly in the past year.
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