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Ronald L. Wasserstein
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Wasserstein is executive director of the American Statistical Association, a former statistics professor at Washburn University and an expert on state lotteries.

Entries by Ronald L. Wasserstein

Don't Worry, Jackpot Players - More Big Jackpots Are on the Way!

(0) Comments | Posted January 14, 2016 | 3:13 PM

Disappointed about missing out on the $1.6B jackpot Wednesday night? If you bought a ticket, of course you are! Chances are good, however, that you won't have to wait terribly long for another opportunity.

The size of the jackpot is directly related to the number of Powerball tickets sold...

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Giant Powerball Jackpot? No Surprise!

(0) Comments | Posted January 13, 2016 | 2:37 PM

As everyone in America seems to know, the Powerball jackpot has reached new heights, with an estimated annuity prize of $1.5 billion for the drawing on Wednesday, January 13, 2016. A monster jackpot is exactly what Powerball hoped for when it changed its game structure last fall.


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If Winning the Powerball Jackpot Were a Matter of Time...

(0) Comments | Posted January 12, 2016 | 11:35 PM

For those still trying to get their minds around the probability of winning the Powerball jackpot, here's another example. Suppose the 292,201,338 combinations in the game were seconds. That's the equivalent of over 81,000 hours, more than 3300 days, or just over 9 years.

Imagine then a game in...

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Someone Has to Win - It Just Isn't Going to Be You!

(2) Comments | Posted February 5, 2015 | 5:43 PM

I wrote in this space a couple of years ago about the unlikelihood of winning the Powerball or other large lotteries.

I ended that column by leaving open the following big question: "How does anyone win, if the probability is so small?" The occurrence of...

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A Statistician's View: What Are Your Chances of Winning the Powerball Lottery?

(25) Comments | Posted May 16, 2013 | 6:02 PM

In November 2012, a Missouri couple and an Arizona man shared the largest Powerball jackpot ever -- $587 million. An article about the Missouri couple -- Mark and Cindy Hill -- appeared in The Huffington Post on February 25 telling a wonderful...

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