Thursday, March 29, 2012
Mega Millions reaches record $476 million jackpot
Updated 10:59 a.m., Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Mega Millions jackpot at $500 million and counting
The Mega Millions jackpot has reached a record $500 million, the California Lottery announced Wednesday.
The jackpot grew to an estimated $476 million after no one won the drawing Tuesday night, and there is expected to be much demand for tickets in the next few days in advance of Friday's drawing.
California's Mega Millions record is a $390-million payout won in March 2007.
Six five-of-five ticket winners were from Southern California, lottery officials announced Tuesday night. Three others were in Sacramento, Redding and Mill Valley in Northern California.
The Southern California five-of-five tickets were purchased at Surf Liquor in Santa Monica, Stopper Liquor in Placentia, a 7-11 on Archibold Avenue in Corona, Tommy's Tobacco store in Imperial Beach, a Unocal 76 Station on Valley Boulevard in Fontana and an Arco AM/PM on University Parkway in San Bernardino.
The numbers drawn Tuesday night were 9, 19, 34, 44, 51 and the mega number was 24.
Lottery officials had placed the odds of winning Mega Millions at about 1 in 176 million. The retailer who sells the winning ticket will receive a maximum $1-million bonus.
"I've bought more than 20 but I haven't won a thing. I fill them out, a dollar, a dollar, a dollar and I say, 'Hopefully God gives me a few bills,'" said Marcos Garcia, a 47-year-old unemployed handyman from Boyle Heights. He was near Brooklyn Liquor, where he bought his tickets.
Garcia said he will be watching for the Friday drawing. "I'm going to buy five more or something. It's worth a shot," he said. "Oof, I'd probably drop dead if I won."
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"This is a very exciting time for the Arizona Lottery since the Mega Millions jackpot is half a billion dollars for Friday night's draw, a U.S. lottery record," said Karen Bach, assistant director of budget, products and communications for the Arizona Lottery. "The Arizona Lottery encourages players to play responsibly and know their limits."
Mega Millions tickets cost $1 each. Players select five out of 56 numbers, then select one out of 46 for the Mega Ball number. Players can also pay an extra $1 for a Megaplier that multiplies winnings, excluding the jackpot, up to four times the original amount. Drawings are held on Tuesdays and Fridays. The game is played in 42 states, plus Washington, D.C. and the Virgin Islands.
In the last week alone, there have been more than 56,000 Mega Millions winners in Arizona.
Players must be 21 years or older to purchase or redeem tickets. Winners have 180 days from the drawing date to claim their prize at an Arizona Lottery office or by mail. Overall odds vary by game. In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, these materials may be made available in an alternate format. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-NEXT STEP. Please Play Responsibly. ™
About the Arizona Lottery
The Arizona Lottery operates entirely from the revenue it generates through the sale of its products; it receives no General Fund dollars from the State. Proceeds from sales of Lottery tickets -- nearly $3 million per week -- fund a variety of state programs. Since July 1981, the Arizona Lottery has paid out more than $4.6 billion in prizes to players, nearly $2.7 billion in net profit to the state and more than $550 million in commissions to retailers.
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- UPDATE 11-Brent dips; potential oil reserve release weighsTue, Mar 27 2012
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In the past month, U.S. fuel prices have jumped about $0.30 per gallon to about $3.90 and the Republicans seeking to replace the Democrat in the November 6 election have seized upon the issue to attack his energy policies.
The disapproval reaches across party lines, potentially spelling trouble for Obama in the election, although the online survey showed voters hold oil companies or foreign countries more accountable than politicians for the price spike.
"Obama is getting heat for it but people aren't necessarily blaming him for it," said Chris Jackson, research director for Ipsos public affairs.
Majorities of Republicans, Democrats and independents all disapprove of the president's handling of gas prices, according to the online poll of 606 Americans conducted March 26-27.
Eighty-nine percent of Republicans said they disapproved, as did 52 percent of Democrats and 73 percent of independents.
"People are unhappy that they are having to pay $3.90 a gallon. They want somebody to be able to lash out at and the president is as good a person as anybody," Jackson said.
BLAMING OIL COMPANIES
The most common reason cited by voters of all political stripes for the rising cost was oil company greed.
Overall, 36 percent of respondents said "oil companies that want to make too much profit" deserve the most blame for higher energy prices. Twenty-eight percent of Republicans said so, as did 44 percent of Democrats and 32 percent of independents.
Twenty-six percent of all respondents said a range of factors was equally to blame, including oil companies, politicians, foreign countries that dominate oil reserves and environmentalists who want to limit oil exploration.
There was little difference in that result across party lines. Twenty-seven percent of Republicans, 24 percent of Democrats and 32 percent of independents said all of those factors were equally to blame.
Republicans have hit Obama particularly hard for his decision to block TransCanada Corp.'s Keystone XL Canada-to-Texas pipeline as a sign that his energy priorities are hurting America.
Hoping to placate car-loving Americans, Obama toured U.S. oil country last week to tout his "all of the above" energy strategy that includes room for oil and gas development in addition to support for renewable fuels.
In Oklahoma, he pledged to accelerate approval of the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline. Republicans immediately dismissed the campaign-style stop as a stunt, saying Obama does not have the authority to really jump start the project.
Jackson said Obama has little to fear, at least according to historic trends, from gas prices alone if the U.S. economy continues to recover from deep recession.
Previous spikes in fuel prices have not affected U.S. presidential election results. But economists warn that higher gas prices could slow the overall economy, which would toughen Obama's chances of winning re-election.
The poll has a credibility interval of plus or minus 4.6 percentage points for all respondents.
(Editing by Alistair Bell and Eric Beech
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Who Sells Gasoline in the United States?
Convenience stores sell the majority of the gasoline purchased in the United States, and despite
canopies that promote a specific brand of gasoline, very few of these stores – less than 3 percent – are
owned an operated by one of the integrated, major oil companies.
It is much more likely that the business is owned by an independent entrepreneur who lives in the
community. Of the 110,895 convenience stores selling gasoline in the United States in 2004, a whopping
55 percent (61,148 stores) were one-store operations, compared to only 13 percent (14,612 stores) that
were operated by a company having 500 or more stores.
Convenience stores sell more than three-quarters of the country’s gasoline
Convenience stores in 2004 sold an estimated 79 percent of all gasoline purchased in the U.S. – a sharp
increase from as recent as 1997 when convenience stores sold an estimated 59 percent of the country’s
Overall, 80.2 percent of convenience stores sell gasoline, and motor fuels (gasoline and diesel fuel) sales
account for 66.5 percent of the convenience store industry’s total sales. (However, low gross margins on
fuel – 6.9 percent in 2004 – mean that motor fuels sales contributed only about one-third of total store
gross margins dollars – 36.6 percent.)
Contrast this to 1971, when only 6.8 percent of convenience stores – a total of only 1,401 stores
nationwide – sold gasoline. What happened?
Following the 1973 OPEC oil embargo, more states began allowing self-service gasoline (New Jersey
and Oregon still prohibit it), so the number of convenience store gasoline outlets grew. By 1976, stores
selling gasoline were profitable and the numbers were growing. There was a competitive battle in
gasoline retailing as seen by the number of stores offering gasoline – the average margin dropped, while
the average gallons sold per store went up. As the major oil companies withdrew from certain locations,
convenience stores became more and more significant as a source of gasoline sales.
“Hypermarkets” increasingly are selling gasoline
Besides convenience stores, a growing percentage of gasoline sales in the U.S. are from “hypermarkets”
– the term collectively refers to the group of mass retailers that includes supermarkets, discount retailers
and warehouse clubs. According to Energy Analysts International (EAI), as of July 2005, 3,860
hypermarket store sites sold motor fuels, but that figure continues to grow. Hypermarkets
comprise approximately 2-3 percent of the motor fuels retailing outlets, but capture 7.7 percent of total
fuels sales. Wal-Mart has approximately 1,300 gasoline retailing sites inclusive of Wal-Mart sites (Optima,
Murphy and Mirastar), Neighborhood Stores and Sam’s Clubs, EAI estimates.
One particular area of growth for fuels sales are supermarkets. In 2003, only 18 percent of new
supermarkets had gas pumps. But almost 62 percent of grocery stores that were scheduled to be
constructed in 2004 included fueling in their blueprints, according to the Food Marketing Institute.
Fuel-only stations on the decline
The rest of the gasoline purchased in the United States is sold at traditional service stations, but those
that depend on gasoline sales alone are disappearing due to low and declining gasoline margins. An
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
C-Store News: Mega Millions $365,000,000 Play From Home On Line Win From Home On...1 save http://cstorenews.blogspot.com/2012/03/mega-millions-365000000-play-from-ho...
Mega Millions $365,000,000 Play From Home On Line Win From Home On Line
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