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Powerball ticket price doubling in '12


Starting next year, Powerball lottery tickets will increase in price, and players will have better odds of winning, according to lottery officials.

An official news release Monday said ticket prices will increase from $1 to $2 starting Jan. 15. Powerball jackpots will start at $40 million, double the current starting jackpot of $20 million.

Players in the newly designed game will still choose their first five numbers from a pool of 59. But the group of numbers in the Powerball pool will shrink from 39 to 35, producing better overall odds of winning a prize, the release said.

Players today have a 1 in 35 overall chance of winning, which will improve to 1 in 31.8 in the revamped game.

The new Powerball game will still offer players nine ways to win prizes, with its second prize moving up to $1 million from the current $200,000, and the lowest prize level (for those who match just the Powerball®) being elevated to $4 from $3.

Powerball will celebrate its 20th year in 2012.