I created a startup hijacking the psychology behind the lottery to help people save money. We’ve given away over $4 million in cash prizes and two Tesla Model 3s over the past year. AMA about lottery odds, the psychology behind lotteries, or about...
Hi Reddit! I’m Adam Moelis. I'm the co-founder of Yotta, a free app that uses behavioral economics to help people save money by making saving exciting.
For every $25 deposited into an FDIC-insured Yotta account, users get a recurring ticket into our weekly random number drawings with chances to win cash prizes ranging from $0.10 to the $10 million jackpot. Even if you don't win a prize, you still get paid over 2x the national average on your savings (we currently offer a 0.2% savings bonus).
Each ticket has 7 numbers on it and every night at 9pm EST we draw the next number, the more numbers a user matches, the more money they win. Match all 7 and they win the $10M jackpot. The concept is very similar to Powerball or Mega Millions, but unlike the lottery, there’s literally no way you can lose money.
Taking inspiration from savings programs in other countries like Premium Bonds in the UK, we’re on a mission to put state-run lotteries that often act as and are described as a “tax on the poor” out of business while improving the financial health of Americans through evangelizing the benefits of “prize-linked savings accounts” here in the US. A Freakonomics podcast has described prize-linked savings accounts as a "no-lose lottery".
As part of building Yotta, I spent lots of time studying how lotteries (Powerball & Mega Millions) and scratch tickets across the country work, consulting with behind-the-scenes state lottery employees, and working with PhDs on understanding the psychology behind why people play the lottery despite it being such a sub-optimal financial decision.
Ask me anything about lottery odds, the psychology behind why people play the lottery, or about how a no-lose lottery works.