Powerball jackpot swells to $550 million

The Powerball lottery is inching closer to its highest jackpot ever.

The payout, which had rolled to $475 million after Wednesday's drawing, was increased by $75 million this afternoon as a result of strong ticket sales. The prize has an estimated cash value of $350.1 million.

The next drawing is Saturday night.

Powerball was offering the seventh-largest jackpot in U.S. lottery history before Wednesday's drawing, but none of the tickets sold for the $360 million prize matched all six numbers drawn.

The current jackpot is shadowed only by the $587.5 million Powerball jackpot split between two tickets in November, and the $640 million Mega Millions jackpot shared among three winning tickets in March 2012.

The numbers drawn Wednesday are 2, 11, 26, 34, 41 and the Powerball 32.

The Mega Millions game is offering a $190 million jackpot, or $140 million with the cash option, in Friday's drawing.

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