February 2013 was a mixed bag for cable news. While there was lots of news happening, with the exception of the State of the Union and coverage of the Carnival Triumph, not much really broke out among viewers. Fox News, the cable news leader, led the competition with the top 13 programs in total viewers, and the top six in the adults 25-54 demo.
The top FNC program in both categories was, as usual, “The O’Reilly Factor,” which averaged 2.23 million viewers 443,000 viewers, respectively. Somewhat surprisingly, “The Five,” which does not air in primetime, was the number two program in both categories.
MSNBC’s top show in total and demo viewers was “Rachel Maddow,” which averaged 999,000 and 269,000 viewers, respectively, placing 14th in total viewers and seventh in the demo. CNN’s top show in both categories was the 8 PM airing of “AC360,” which averaged 790,000 and 235,000 viewers, respectively, placing 17th in total viewers and 11th in the demo.
HLN’s “Nancy Grace” led her network, averaging 545,000 total viewers and 167,000 demo viewers.
For the business networks: CNBC’s top program in total viewers was “Squawk on the Street,” with 235,000 viewers, while the top demo program was “American greed,” with 104,000. Fox Business Network’s “Lou Dobbs Tonight” was tops in total and demo viewers, averaging 102,000 total viewers and roughly 26,000 demo viewers, though that is below Nielsen’s minimum accuracy threshold.
The cable program rankers are below.