With lottery mania and all of the excitement over the manipulated Mega Millions jackpot, I decided it was time to tell you how to win the lottery. Don’t play it. You’re welcome. How do you win the lottery by not playing it? Take that two dollars per day and invest it. Given that your odds of dying via a lightning strike are far better than winning the Mega Millions. I’m not suggesting you sacrifice anything. In fact, if you just follow what I’m suggesting that I do all you’ll almost certainly win.
Mega Millions tickets are $2. Rather than taking a match to $2 every day, if you only invested it at the average rate of return for the S&P 500 you’ll likely win the lottery. Let’s say you played the Mega Millions daily at $2 per ticket starting at 18 and continued until the age of 62 when you decided you wanted to retire. You’ll likely have wasted $32,120 chasing the dream. On the other hand, if you simply took that $2 per day and invested in the S&P 500, you would have $596,295.
When people say it’s only $2 it’s really not. It’s the opportunity cost of that money. The average annual rate of return in the S&P 500 is 10%. That’s simply what happens if you experience average rates of return on the best long-term use of your money. Zero dollars for almost everyone who ever plays or nearly $600,000 for simply the average performance. The choice is yours. If you want to win the lottery the key isn’t to play, it’s to invest. Once you’ve invested wisely, you’ll have a lot more to play with.
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