Chance of €1m Prize Bond win halved
The chances of becoming a millionaire by winning big on Prize Bonds are set to diminish.
The prize fund is set to be reduced, in a move that will lessen the chances of holders of the bonds winning a prize.
From next month, there will be two €1m top prizes a year, down from four at present.
And the reduction in the overall size of the prize fund is likely to mean half the number of weekly €50 prizes will be paid out on Prize Bonds.
Instead of paying interest to those who invest in them, the Prize Bond system puts some of the money invested into a prize fund. From this, a minority will win prizes.
The National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA), which issues Prize Bonds, said it was reducing the size of the prize fund from next month to 0.5pc of the money invested in it, down from 0.85pc previously.
There is more than €3bn invested in Prize Bonds at the moment. The amount of money put into the bonds is up from last year.
Reducing the proportion of the fund paid out in prizes will mean the total pay-outs per year will now come down to around €15.5m.
Last year, around €28m was paid out in prizes.
Priced from €25 per bond, Prize Bonds are sold by An Post.
The NTMA said the top weekly prize would continue to be €50,000, except in the last weekly draw of June and December, when the top prize would be €1m.
Each week there will continue to be 10 prizes of €1,000 and 10 prizes of €500 respectively. The remaining weekly prize fund will be awarded in €50 prizes.
But there are expected to be only around 3,700 weekly €50 prizes, half the current number.
Up to now, there were four €1m prizes doled out each year. There will be two €1m prizes a year from August.