Official lottery – a game in which numbers are drawn to win a prize. The prizes are used to benefit public services such as education, roads and hospitals. The game is illegal in some countries, but it is a popular source of revenue for state governments and has been played for centuries. It is also a source of controversy over corruption and bribery.

The draw was originally broadcast on a Wednesday, later changing to Friday and then to nightly. It is currently a 30-minute show, hosted from the National Lottery studios in London by Gethin Jones. Guests and interviews with previous winners are also featured. The winning numbers are announced by a member of the team. The show is available to watch on the Lottery’s website.

In the United States, lotteries raise millions of dollars for state governments and are a key source of income for poor families. They provide state governments with a new, flexible source of revenue that allows them to expand social safety net programs without significantly increasing taxes on middle-class and working-class people. They are often marketed as a way to “give back” to the community by funding things that might otherwise not be funded through taxation.

In addition to traditional draw games, the National Lottery sells scratchcards, small cards with an area covered by a layer of opaque latex that can be scratched to reveal hidden images or items. These cards are usually sold in newsagents and supermarkets and cost PS1, PS2, or PS3. The winner must match the number of a winning combination to receive the prize.