Cable Network Ranker: Week of March 6

By A.J. Katz Comment

Another week, another win for Fox News among total viewers. FNC topped all basic cable networks in for the 10th consecutive week in total day viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research. In prime time, Fox News averaged 2.5 million viewers, marking the 8th straight week the network has topped the basic cable landscape in both prime time and in total day viewers.

Among all cable programs for the week, The O’Reilly Factor notched 3 of the top 5 telecasts in total viewers, all ranking higher than the ACC Championship game on ESPN on March 11th. Additionally, FNC programs made up 11 of the top 25 telecasts in total viewers, including various episodes of The Five, Special Report with Bret Baier, The O’Reilly Factor, Tucker Carlson Tonight and Hannity.

Here’s a look at the top 5 basic cable networks of the week, both in prime time and in total day viewers:

Basic Cable Top 5 – Prime time (P2+)

  1. Fox News (2,494,000)
  2. ESPN (1,711,000)
  3. MSNBC (1,694,000)
  4. HGTV (1,619,000)
  5. Discovery (1,449,000)

Basic Cable Top 5 – Total Day (P2+)

  1. Fox News (1,470,000)
  2. Nickelodeon (1,202,000)
  3. HGTV (908,000)
  4. MSNBC (894,000)
  5. ESPN (885,000)

MSNBC marked 7 weeks of beating CNN in total prime time viewership, and ranked No. 3 overall across the basic cable landscape this past week. The network grew +80 percent in prime time viewers from the same week in 2016. MSNBC’s ratings performance was almost as strong across total day, with the network ranking No. 4 overall and posting +66 percent year-over-year total viewer growth in the daypart.

CNN ranked No. 11 in total prime time viewers, and No. 8 in total day this past week. The network posted double-digit viewership declines from the same week last year. But why? CNN was the No. 1 cable network in prime time this week last year, a week which included primary coverage, a Democratic debate, a GOP debate, chaos at a Trump rally in Chicago, and a town hall. It would have been very tough to top that in the ratings department.

CNBC ranked No. 45 in prime time this past week, and saw +1 percent audience growth in the daypart from the same week last year. The network ranked No. 61 in total day viewers, and was -6 percent in the daypart from last year.

HLN ranked No. 51 in prime time this past week, -15 percent in the daypart from the same week last year. The network saw a higher ranking in total day (No. 38), but was still -26 percent in the daypart from last year.

Fox Business ranked No. 84 in prime time this past week,  -16 percent in the daypart from last year. The put on a better performance across total day, finishing the week with a No. 63 ranking and growing +29 percent in the daypart year-over-year.

Cable Network Ranker: Week of March 6 (Total Viewers)

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