What the $1.3 Billion Mega Millions Jackpot Reveals About the Economy
Two things tend to boost lottery-ticket sales: massive jackpots and economic downturns. Last week, both seemed to be in play.
On Thursday, the Commerce Department said the country’s gross domestic product, a broad measure of the goods and services produced, fell at an annual rate of 0.9% in the second quarter. This was the second quarter in a row to decline, a common definition of a recession.
Then, on Friday, Mega Millions had its second-largest drawing ever of $1.3 billion. The outsize jackpot generated $703.6 million in sales nationally, lottery officials said....