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The Truth About Playing The Lottery

Author: Dale Smock

The truth about playing the lottery

Easy money is everybody's dream. Whether it's the proverbial money growing on trees, an unexpected inheritance or simply finding a dollar stuffed in a forgotten coat pocket, dreams of acquiring money without really earning it are very common.

One of the most common fantasies of striking it rich quick is the lottery. For a dollar or two, consumers can anxiously scratch a ticket or watch the news to see if they are millions of dollars wealthier than they were yesterday.

Of course, the odds are stacked against all of us. But by how much? With variable prizes, fluctuating odds and hundreds of ways to play, discerning the lottery can seem quite complicated. However, with a little information, understanding - if not actually winning - the classic gamble can be simplified.

Consider the jackpot
Odds for winning the lottery remain relatively static, even as the total prize fluctuates. So, while you won't have a better chance of winning a larger haul, your potential gains are more sizable. Saving your money for a historically high payout can help you get the best odds of winning more money.

Birthday wishes
Many people use their birthdate to inform their number selection, which is exactly why you shouldn't. Picking numbers not found in birthdays - numbers above 12 and 31, for example - can serve you well. This tactic won't increase your chances of winning - the numbers all have the same chance of being selected, after all - but it can help you reduce the chance of splitting the pot with a boatload of others.

Sometimes winning is losing
The last thing to understand about the lottery is that winning it might not be all it's cracked up to be. There are many stories of lucky winners who realized that holding on to their lottery winnings was almost as hard as striking it rich in the first place. With exorbitant taxes, the inevitable shift of lifestyle and hardup friends looking for a loan, many winners quickly found their millions evaporating.

In Brief

  • Easy money is everybody's dream.
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