Mega Millions jackpot grows after top prize goes unclaimed

The jackpot is approximately $400 million for the next lottery drawing, which is scheduled for Friday, December 13. Though high, the prize remains below the record set nearly two years ago.

REUTERS/Mike Blake
A mega million lottery ticket is shown in San Diego, California in this photograph. The U.S. Mega Millions jackpot grew for Friday's draw after no one won the top prize on Tuesday.

The U.S. Mega Millions jackpot grew to an estimated $400 million for the next draw on Friday after no one won the top prize of $344 million on Tuesday evening, lottery organizers said.

The next draw is slated for Friday, December 13 - considered an unlucky date by some - at 11 p.m. E.T. (0400 GMT Saturday).

If the winner chose to take a cash prize instead of an annuity, it would amount to $216 million, according to the Mega Millions website www.megamillions.com.

Tuesday's top prize had a cash payout option of $184 million, according to the lottery, which is played in a majority of U.S. states. The winning numbers from that drawing were: 5, 12, 22, 41, 65 and 13, Mega Millions said.

No one has won the jackpot in more than two months, pushing the purse steadily higher, although it remains well below the record-setting $656 million won on March 30, 2012.

The next largest prizes in the 17-year history of Mega Millions were worth $390 million and $380 million.

(Reporting by Elizabeth Dilts and Eric M. Johnson; Editing by Bernard Orr and Lisa Shumaker)

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