To play or not to play? Local professor offers Powerball advice

WASHINGTON — If you’re wondering whether you should buy a Powerball ticket, and what to do with it if you win, a guy who knows quite a bit about money has some advice for you.

Allan Eberhart, a professor of finance at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, does not advise spending the money on a ticket in the first place.

“It’s not something that makes any statistical sense. It’s a bad bet,” he says, in the latest in a series of “Ask a Professor” videos Georgetown University has put together.

If you do choose to play the Powerball lottery and are lucky enough to win, Eberhart suggests hiring a financial adviser who does not charge a percentage of your wealth.

“It’s much more transparent when it’s a flat fee or an hourly fee,” says Eberhart.

After paying off your debts, he suggests making investments.

One kind of investment Eberhart recommends is Treasury Inflation Protected Securities, or TIPS.

“That’s the closest thing that we have in the proverbial real world, to a risk-free investment,” he says.

“Think carefully about what you want to do. Talk carefully with people that you trust, and think of others. Think of good charities that you can give to.”

Many people dream of winning a big lottery jackpot and quitting their job, but Eberhart says that’s easier said than done.

“The more you can just be yourself and just appreciate the gift you were given, I think the better off you’re going to be.”

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