28 people were just one number off from winning the $900 million Powerball

The Powerball lottery prize is currently at a record-breaking $1.4 billion.

The latest drawing took place on Saturday, January 9. While no one was lucky enough to take home the grand prize, there was still plenty of cash doled out.

USA Mega’s Powerball website reports over 18 million players won a combined total of approximately $159.1 million.

According to their summary of winning tickets, 28 people won a $1 million prize. All of them were just one number away from taking home the whole pot of $900 million.

Powerball works like this: Players have to select 6 total numbers in the hopes that all 6 match the randomly drawn numbers. Then they get the grand prize. As USA Mega explains, “You select five distinct numbers between 1 and 69, and one ‘Powerball’ number between 1 and 26.”

But Powerball issues partial winnings to people who have at least some matching numbers. The odds of taking home the 2nd place prize are 1 in 11,688,053.

In the case of the 28 winners from Saturday’s drawing, all they were missing was the Powerball number. But in return for matching the first five digits, each person will receive a $1 million prize. One such winner, Joe Watson, wound up with $670,000 after taxes. He’ll probably wind up with slightly less than that, after federal and state taxes on the winnings are finalised.

The next Powerball drawing will be held on Wednesday, January 13 at 10:59 p.m. EST. The pool is currently sitting at $1.4 billion, and will continue to rise as ticket sales boom.

NOW WATCH: How to use maths to win at Monopoly

NOW WATCH: Briefing videos

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.