The grand prize was increased from $500 million to $550 million as the pace of sales increased before the drawing. Powerball is played in 42 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The new jackpot would be worth $360.2 million cash to a single winner, the lottery said on its website.
"Typically, 60 percent of sales occur the last day, "Chuck Strutt, executive director of the Multi-State Lottery Association told USA Today.
He estimated ticket sales would average 6.3 million a hour before the drawing at 10:59 p.m. EST.
Mena Suvari shares her delightfully awkward Christmas card photo
Obama 'selfie' photographer speaks out: 'Photos can lie'