Powerball jackpot soars to $500 million for Wednesday's drawing

Lottery officials say the chance of getting a winner in Wednesday's Powerball drawing is approaching 60 percent.

The jackpot has grown to a record $500 million, from the previously posted $425 million, on a surge in ticket sales across all 44 participating states.

A single winner choosing the cash payout will take home $327 million before taxes.

New York Lottery says that if no one matches all six numbers drawn on Wednesday, the jackpot will continue to climb. The prize for matching the first five numbers drawn is now $1,000,000.

Tickets for the drawing will remain on sale until 9pm Wednesday night.

The price of a ticket doubled in January to $2 as part of a plan to build jackpots faster, drive sales and generate more money for states that play the game. That plan appears to be working with sales revenue up about 35 percent over last year.

The jackpot is the largest ever for the Powerball game and the second largest lottery jackpot of all time, eclipsed only by the $656 million Mega Millions record set in March.

(Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.)