Manhattan Newsstand Sells Powerball Ticket Worth At Least $1 Million, Though Winner Has Yet To Come Forward

Posted By Derek Helling on April 16, 2021 - Last Updated on April 17, 2021

When a lottery retailer sells a ticket that hits a large prize, it’s an exciting thing for both parties in the transaction.

A Manhattan newsstand and a so-far anonymous customer are the latest examples of the effects of a winning Powerball ticket.

The ticket matched all five numbers in the April 14 drawing, triggering a prize of at least $1 million. That means some press for the business that sold the ticket is imminent, which likely means a surge in sales.

Details on the winning Powerball ticket sale in Manhattan

Soho News International, located on Prince St. in Soho, sold the ticket ahead of Wednesday’s drawing. The winning numbers were 13-30-33-45-61. The lottery player just missed out on the jackpot as the Power Ball number 14 did not match.

Hitting all five numbers in Powerball nets a guaranteed $1 million. The ticket could be worth more, though. If the buyer spent the extra dollar to add the Power Play to the ticket, that person can claim a $2 million prize instead.

Either way, the buyer defied the odds. According to the Multi-State Lottery Corporation, odds of hitting all five numbers in Powerball are 1 in 11,688,053.52. Thus far, the player has not come forward to claim the prize. New York law gives winners up to a full calendar year to do so.

While the law in the Empire State does not allow individuals to remain anonymous when they collect prizes, there are ways for winners of prizes of such value to protect their interests. Financial and legal professionals are best-suited to assist there.

For the proprietors of Soho News International, the news of the sale is no doubt welcome. Players should note, though, that the odds of this business selling another ticket of this value anytime soon are extremely remote.

Free advertising for Soho News, friendly reminder for players

Unlike the lotteries in other states, the New York Lottery does not give retailers a bonus when they sell tickets like this. Lottery retailers get the same 6% commission on sales no matter if any tickets they sell win or not. One thing that does work in retailers’ favor, though, is the fact that there’s no cap on that commission.

So, Soho News might benefit from a temporary burst of people coming in to try to replicate the feat. However, any belief that the location of a ticket purchase makes a difference is mere superstition.

Powerball is a game of complete and pure chance, predicated on the totally random drawing of numbers. There is nothing any players can do to improve the odds of winning any prize. Even buying more tickets does not improve the fixed odds of any single ticket matching any numbers from a drawing.

Playing more often does increase the likelihood you will eventually win a prize. But, whether you actually make a profit off that strategy is another matter. If you buy a ticket before each drawing for five consecutive weeks, for example, that would cost you $20. You might get a ticket worth $4 in that stretch, but you’d still be down $16 in that instance.

For one player in Manhattan last week, the fates smiled. The free press from the winning Powerball ticket sale probably won’t hurt Soho News International’s revenue, either.

Photo by AP / Matt Rourke
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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a freelance journalist who resides in Kansas City, Mo. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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