Basic Cable Ranker: Week of Feb. 19

By A.J. Katz 

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Fox News fended off a strong Winter Olympics performance from NBCSN, and was the most-watched basic cable network for the week of Feb. 19, 2018.

Per Nielsen data, FNC won the week in total prime time viewers, and marked its seventh consecutive week as the most-watched cable network in total day.

But compared to the same week in Feb. 2017 (Feb. 20), Fox News was -15 percent in  prime time, and -15 percent in total day.

MSNBC was the second-most-watched cable network last week, and posted +20 percent growth in total prime time viewers from last year. The network was No. 3 across cable in total day viewers, and posted +27 percent year-over-year growth.

CNN posted +9 percent total viewer growth in prime time, but was -2 percent in total day versus the comparable week in 2017. CNN defeated MSNBC when it came to adults 25-54, both in prime time and in total day. It was No. 14 across all of basic cable in the prime time demo, and No. 11 in the total day demo.

MSNBC finished behind both Fox News and CNN in the demo in both of the aforementioned dayparts.

Here’s basic cable’s top 5 for the week of Feb. 19, 2018:


Total Viewers

  1. Fox News (2,280,000)
  2. MSNBC (1,786,000)
  3. NBCSN (1,736,000)
  4. USA (1,374,000)
  5. HGTV (1,362,000)


  1. AMC (720,000)
  2. NBCSN (675,000)
  3. TBS (640,000)
  4. USA (625,000)
  5. TNT (488,000)


Total Viewers

  1. Fox News (1,365,000)
  2. NBCSN (1,049,000)
  3. MSNBC (999,000)
  4. Nickelodeon (926,000)
  5. HGTV (799,000)


  1. NBCSN (421,000)
  2. Investigation Discovery (326,000)
  3. USA (301,000)
  4. Fox News (288,000)
  5. HGTV (278,000)

The duo of network rankers, sorted by total viewers and adults 25-54, respectively:

Basic Cable Ranker: Week of Feb. 19 (Total Viewers)

Basic Cable Ranker: Week of Feb. 19 (A25-54)