Nearly 37.8 million Americans watched the inauguration of President Barack Obama, making Obama’s inauguration the second most-viewed Presidential inauguration since Ronald Reagan’s record 41.8 million viewers in 1981.
According to Nielsen, Tuesday’s inauguration had a household rating of 25.5 and a rating of 13.2 among persons 2 and older.
The Live plus same-day estimate reflects viewing to 17 broadcast and cable networks between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET. The ratings do not include viewers to various Web sites, which reported heavy traffic.
Among the 56 markets where Nielsen measures TV audiences using electronic meters, Raleigh-Durham had the largest inaugural TV audience with a 51.2 rating, followed by Washington, D.C. (47.7), Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News, Va. (46.7), Baltimore (44.3) and Greensboro-High Point-Winston Salem, N.C. (42.3).
Markets with the smallest TV audiences to the inaugural festivities included Seattle-Tacoma with and 18.8 TV household rating, Portland, Ore. (20.2), San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose (20.2), Sacramento-Stockton-Modesto, Calif. (21.1), and Denver (21.3).