During the first full week after Election Day, Fox News was the most-watched basic cable network in prime time and total day, per Nielsen data. FNC beat CNN and MSNBC combined in average total viewers. Fox News gained +34 percent in total prime time viewers, and +28 percent in total day viewers from the comparable week in 2015. The week of Nov. 14 represents the 14th consecutive week Fox News finished No. 1 across basic cable in total day viewers.
The network’s post-election week was highlighted by the premiere of Tucker Carlson Tonight. The program got off to a strong start in the 7 p.m. timeslot, significantly out performing its 7 p.m. predecessor On The Record as well as its CNN and MSNBC competition in the hour.
On Friday, the network aired OBJECTified, a Donald Trump-focused special hosted by TMZ’s Harvey Levin. The program delivered over 4 million total viewers, making it the most-watched Friday, 10 p.m. program in network history.
MSNBC had a strong week in terms of total audience. The network beat CNN in prime time, and gained +63 percent in the category from last year. MSNBC finished behind CNN in total day viewers, but gained +36 percent in the daypart.
The aforementioned CNN grew +16 percent from the same week last year in total prime time viewers, but -1 percent in total day viewers.
HLN had a down week relative to this week last year, -18 percent in total prime time viewers and -13 percent in total day viewers.
CNBC defeated Fox Business in total prime time viewers this past week, though the network was -19 percent from the same week last year. Fox Business beat CNBC in total day viewers, and rose +103 percent in the daypart year-over-year.
Below are the top 5 basic cable networks for the week of Nov. 14, followed by a complete basic cable network ranking.
Week of Nov. 14:
Top 5 – Primetime (P2+)
- FNC (3,099,000)
- ESPN (3,023,000)
- Hallmark (2,238,000)
- USA (1,444,000)
- TBS (1,433,000)
Top 5 – Total Day (P2+)
- FNC (1,803,000)
- ESPN (1,230,000)
- NICK (1,210,000)
- Hallmark (1,114,000)
- Adult Swim (847,000)