Powerball jackpot balloons to $360M

Drawing on Local 10 on Wednesday night

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DES MOINES, Iowa - The Powerball jackpot has ballooned to $360 million in a matter of weeks, a jump that's propelled it to be the third largest Powerball jackpot and the seventh largest jackpot in history.

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Lottery officials say the "cross-selling" of Powerball and Mega Millions tickets, as well as a game redesign in 2012, boosted jackpots and increased the odds of winning some kind of prize.

The big money almost wasn't so big as Local 10 Tech Expert, Craig Agranoff, came within one number of winning Saturday night's drawing which held a $270 million jackpot. Agranoff had every digit correct other than holding a 23 when one number was 25.

Iowa Lottery spokeswoman Mary Neubauer says large jackpots are "the new normal," and she expects them to keep surpassing all-time jackpot records set years ago.

The last major win came when a New Jersey man won a $338.3 million jackpot on March 23. It is considered the fourth largest Powerball jackpot in history.

The latest drawing is scheduled Wednesday night on Local 10. It has a $229.2 million cash value.

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