Is Winning the Lottery Cursed?

Winning the lottery can be a huge, life-changing event. Imagine you'd just won few millions $$ from TOTO and not to forget the probability of an ordinary S$1 bet winning the jackpot  is 1 in 13,983,816 chance.  You must be “damn lucky in winning the TOTO but what happens to your life after receiving such big “windfall “.

Will your life change better or worse, according to a study, “Lottery winners, despite overwhelming odds, are a rare few to win millions on the turn of a dime. Many are simple people just struggling to get by. Having their financial concerns suddenly vanish must feel good. However, there’s a darker side to winning the lottery. Many winners end up worse off than they were before, broke, deeper in debt, divorced, or worst of all, dead. Like the old saying goes, more money, more problems.

I am not so sure about Singapore’s case as no study been made on past lottery winner, but from below articles, it seems that there is the so-called “ Lottery Cursed “.

Nearly One-Third of U.S. Lottery Winners Declare Bankruptcy (from

“Luck is a tricky thing. And when it comes to those lucky Americans who have won windfalls in the lotteries, it seems to be short-lived. Winners become losers at breakneck speed.
Studies show that lottery winners are more likely to declare bankruptcy within three to five years than the average American.

In fact, nearly one-third of lottery winners declare bankruptcy, and it doesn’t end there. It’s usually followed by depression, drug and alcohol abuse and estrangement from family and friends.”

image credit to

Lottery Curse Victims: 7 People Who Won Big & Lost Bigger (from

“For some, winning the lottery was physically dangerous. Abraham Shakespeare was murdered in 2009 after winning a $30 million jackpot. The suspect, a woman who befriended Shakespeare after he won the lottery, shot him twice in the chest and then buried him under a slab of concrete.

For some, winning the lottery was emotionally dangerous. In 2006, Sandra Hayes won the Missouri lottery, splitting a $224 million prize. Her win was emotionally damaging. “I had to endure the greed and the need that people have, trying to get you to release your money to them. That caused a lot of emotional pain. These are people who you’ve loved deep down, and they’re turning into vampires trying to suck the life out of me.”

image credit to
For some, winning the lottery was behaviorally dangerous. Ronnie Music Jr., for example, won $3 million in a Georgia lottery but found the temptation to make even more money too great and eventually invested part of his winnings in a crystal methamphetamine ring. He recently started serving a 21-year sentence for the crime.”

I think the curse is not just limited to “lottery “, but in any forms of sudden “windfall” for one to receive unexpectedly and have no idea of how to manage it in the first place.

I guess you may still remember on the below case which is closer to us …a sad story for her ignorance in financial planning.

$1m gone in one year: Widow of killed Changi Airport worker is now broke (from

To avoid such “curse”  if you really strike lottery or TOTO one will need to improve your knowledge of financial planning or F.Q ( Financial Quotient ).

As an investor, how will you spend (invest) your millions dollar if you are the only “damn lucky” one to become the next TOTO winner?

Cheers !!

Quote of The Day:

“Luck is great, but most of life is hard work.” Iain Duncan Smith


  1. Despite the danger, I wouldn't mind striking the lottery at all! Haha

    But you are right. It is probably wise to have a plan for such windfall.

    1. Hi The Boy Who Procrastinates,
      LOL , Yah , I don't mind as well ...
      Cheers !! :D

  2. To people without financial knowledge, even if it means to give Bill Gate’s fortune to, he or she will probably end up bankrupted as well.

    I guess the key is financial management to this. So long one is not financially prudent or equipped with such skills, I’m guessing everything will still go back to where it comes from.

    Luck plays a good part too! One that possesses zero or negative FQ will surely not make it. But one with good FQ and super bad luck, I’m guessing the same would happen :)

    1. Hi sleepydevil,
      Yah , you are right , those 富二代 inherited $$ from their parent are the real example ...
      At the end of the day, having FQ is rather important to preserve the wealth from vanish in short period of time...
      Cheers ! :D

  3. This is a joke, Winning is so tough and it is a curse. If that the case, I rather be curse and win big. Those are just a few cases is by no mean indicate anything. Those are probably form those who are envy.

    1. Hi Unknow ,
      Yah, it might be statistically insignificant as the population is too small ... but guess is better to learn from those bad experience and tackle it well when one have received such "windfall" unexpectedly..
      Cheers !! :D

  4. I won the equivalent of Toto thru enbloc exercise about $1.85m. I bought a HDB EA with cash and the rest I locked in CPF. Now I am debt free.

    1. Hi Siew Mun,
      Good to know that !! Congrats for the enbloc and $1.85 Mil , good financial planning to have debt free now !!
      Cheers !! ;D

  5. It's true actually, my neighbor in Malaysia won lottery of RM300K and in the next 3 months, he won another RM3mil. That was about 30 years ago, it only took 10 years for him to go broke and went back to his normal life... He even have to sell his house to stay in a much smaller house now... When the $$ comes too easily, pple don't treasure it...That's human nature, unfortunately. Key thing is still financial literacy and their perpective towards money, and all the good money habit thingy have to start from young.

    1. Hi EW,
      Thanks for the comments and sharing of your neighbor's story ...indeed , is important to have financial literacy and right perspective about money , especially on personal cash flow (Income vs Expenses )..
      Cheers !! :D

  6. What Are Lottery Pools? Lottery pools are a way of getting better odds of winning a lottery without having to pay more money for tickets

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  7. THE CURSE OF THE LOTTERY is very real. Jack Whittaker won the US Powerball jackpot of $314.9, it was the largest jackpot ever won by a single winning ticket in the history of the American lottery. He later said, “My granddaughter is dead because of the money. You know, my wife had said she wished that she had torn the ticket up. Well, I wish that we had torn the ticket up, too … I don’t like the hard heart I’ve got. I don’t like what I’ve become.’


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