Tuesday, 11 June 2019

Couple wins millions using lottery loophole

quote [ It was completely legal and it won them millions. Jon Wertheim reports on how Jerry Selbee and his wife Marge used "basic arithmetic" to crack the code on certain lottery games ]

It was completely legal
[SFW] [games] [+6 Interesting]
[by satanspenis666@2:24amGMT]


mwooody said[1] @ 11:26am GMT on 11th Jun
The article doesn't do a great job of explaining it, but the summary seems to be: a particular lottery game had an occasional "rolldown", in which if no one won the ever-increasing grand prize for a sufficient period of time, it added that prize money to other tiers for a one-time event rather than continuing to build. These events led to the player having a statistical advantage if the pool was sufficient: a slightly favorable probability, at a specific tier of investment, to turn a profit. So the couple started a company that took in investors, waited for these rolldowns, and manually purchased millions of tickets.

I'm frankly astonished that a state lottery would have a game with favorable odds for the player, even if it was only once in a long while. But then, casinos have above-100% payout machines for the same purpose, I guess: to draw in people who then move on to other ventures in the house's favor.
5th Earth said @ 11:34am GMT on 11th Jun
You're basically right, except that it wasn't technically dependent on buying large volumes of tickets. Once the "rolldown" hit, the odds just statistically favored *anyone* playing the game. It's just that the return only became obvious if you checked the math or bought large numbers of tickets, but the key reason this was all legal was that betting in volume did not actually affect the odds.

Post a comment
[note: if you are replying to a specific comment, then click the reply link on that comment instead]

You must be logged in to comment on posts.

Posts of Import
If you got logged out, log back in.
4 More Years!
SE v2 Closed BETA
First Post
Subscriptions and Things
AskSE: What do you look like?

Karma Rankings