Go figure: Accountant miscalculates Powerball prize, actually wins $50K

For a guy who makes a living working with numbers, an accountant made a big blunder when he miscalculated the amount of money he won in a Powerball drawing earlier this month.

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Fortunately, the error was in his favor. Instead of winning $100, the man took home a $50,000 prize.

According to a news release from the Maryland Lottery, the 70-year-old accountant from Washington, D.C., whose identity was not revealed, stopped at a Giant grocery store in Silver Spring and bought a quick pick.

After buying the ticket for the May 3 drawing, the man checked his numbers and believed he had won $100. Not a bad return on an investment.

“When I looked at the numbers, I only saw three matches and the red Powerball,” the man said in a statement. “In my mind, I’m thinking it’s a $100 win.”

The man scanned his ticket at a local lottery retailer to claim his prize, but he received a message directing him to the cashier, lottery officials said.

“I was confused,” the man told officials. “Because it’s only $100, right?”


The lottery player had actually matched four white balls and the red Powerball, giving him a $50,000 payday.

“When the big winner shared his story with Lottery officials, he still couldn’t believe his miscalculation,” lottery officials said in their news release.

Quickly recovering his composure the winner reacted like any good accountant. He said he would probably put most of the cash into his savings account and use the rest to take a vacation.

The Powerball lottery stood at $125 million before Saturday’s drawing.