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$500 Million in the Mega!


Marc Wielage
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My brother had an economics professor at MIT that used to say "everyone has room in their investment portfolio for a lottery ticket". The risk is minimal when you consider what people spend in a week on coffee, food etc and the potential reward is great. Mind you, not 500 tickets, but one or two.

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This is an interesting point. It is also supported by the very influential Nassim Nicholas Taleb, the author of The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable. One of his points is essentially the same as yours, which is that any financial decision based on minimal risk and very substantial reward, however improbable, has the potential to be life altering in profoundly rewarding ways. I suggest reading that book, BTW (it's very tedious at times, but the takeaways are quite impressive).

You may purchase a lottery ticket, and some may laugh, as I have pointed out previously the math makes purchasers look bad. However, the risk is so minimal, and the reward so potentially great, that in fact the arguments for not purchasing a ticket don't hold much weight, unless the dollar you spend is literally so important to you that you can't eat unless you spend it on food.

Plus, it's a lot of fun to think about what I'd do with the money. I bought 5 tickets.

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As Nevada, the gambling capital of the world does not participate, locals here (LAS) are sending out emisarries (PA's) to stand in line and buy tickets, some for individuals, some for "groups"...

Last night someone went to Primm, and got in a huge line, snaking out across the desert, at the Lotto Store, located just feet into CA, (some are going to AZ). of course not being in LAS, the store closed in the evening leaving over 100 POed folks SOL. Today's messenger started much earlier, and at 10 AM there were already well over 150 in line...

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$462m current "cash option" estimate.

$346.5m after 25% federal taxes.

A few states, including California, do NOT tax lottery prizes.

I am so winning this thing! Everyone here gets a shirt that reads...

"Robert Sharman won $640m, and all I got was this stupid T-Shirt!"

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Love it or hate it, the two things you can be certain of in the US are death and taxes. It's no wonder so many businesses here in NYC are cash based...

How about all the BS lately about eliminating CASH ??? I have seen lots of "mentions" of such a future.... going all to trackable,

HACKABLE e-payments and banking....

What a foolish endeavor to buy into..... watch out for this one fellas.

MF

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"Around 7:15 p.m. Friday night, a person came to a 7-Eleven store in Baltimore, Maryland, and paid $1 for a "quick pick" of one line of numbers -- which ended up exactly matching those pulled less than four hours later."

" While only three tickets hit the big jackpot, at least 42 tickets matched five of six numbers -- 29 in California, ... according to lottery officials. California Lottery Commission spokesman Alex Traverso said the payout on those tickets will be about $125,000 to $130,000. "

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How about all the BS lately about eliminating CASH ??? I have seen lots of "mentions" of such a future.... going all to trackable,

HACKABLE e-payments and banking....

What a foolish endeavor to buy into..... watch out for this one fellas.

MF

Yeah, that's just insane to me. I can't conceptualize everything being 100% electronic. Especially not with headlines like this in the papers: Global Payments suffers massive security breach...

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" State lotteries only pay out an average of 60% of their gross revenues, a payout vastly inferior to those of slot machines and table games, which offer payouts in many cases above 90%. "

" Many have argued that while lotteries are indeed taxes, they are not so bad, because people pay them voluntarily. But people only buy government lottery tickets voluntarily because private lotteries are not allowed to operate... People only buy state-run lottery tickets because tickets with better odds are choked out of the market. "

http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/30/opinion/drenkard-lottery-tax-jackpot/index.html?hpt=hp_bn7

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