The Michigan Lottery has revealed it sold nearly 5.4 million tickets at retailers ahead of Wednesday night’s Powerball drawing.
Four million of those tickets were purchased on Wednesday with players enticed by the $1.2bn Powerball jackpot, the second-highest in its history.
The Michigan Lottery also reported that, on average, players bought about 243,000 tickets at retailers per hour on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Tomaine Grissom, a clerk at the Penn-Wood Market in Minneapolis, told StarTribune that sales have been “through the roof” as Minnesota Lottery players look to hit the jackpot.
“It’s ridiculous,” added a clerk at a Holiday convenience store in Plymouth, who said ticket sales have doubled since the pot hit $700m.
Ahead of the latest drawing, WINA also reported that the Virginia Lottery was expecting to sell $6.3m in Powerball tickets on Wednesday alone, at a rate of nearly 6,400 a minute at peak times.
There were no winners on Wednesday night, however, meaning there have now been 39 straight drawings without a jackpot winner since the last one on August 3.
The jackpot for Saturday’s drawing now stands at $1.5bn, making it the third-highest jackpot in US history and just shy of the record Powerball total of $1.59bn.