Evening News Ratings: Q4 2017 & Week of Dec. 25

By A.J. Katz 

For Q4 of 2017, ABC World News Tonight was the most-watched evening newscast, while NBC Nightly News remained the go-to evening newscast among younger news viewers, including the ad-friendly A25-54 demographic.

For ABC News, David Muir-anchored evening newscast has officially scored back-to-back 4th quarter victories in total viewers for the first time in 21 years (since Q4 1995 and Q4 1996).

World News Tonight achieved another feat its competition couldn’t. It was able to post quarter-over-quarter growth in total audience (+4 percent). This comes one year after a presidential election quarter, which makes the feat all the more impressive.

The newscast did lose a bit of steam among adults 25-54 though, -1 percent versus Q4 2016.

While World News put on a dominant performance in the total viewers category, NBC Nightly News once again won the demos. The Lester Holt-anchored newscast has now won 10 consecutive quarters among adults 25-54, the demo coveted by news advertisers, .

On the downside, Nightly lost a bit of steam relative to Q4 2016. The broadcast was -1 percent in total viewers, and -7 percent in the key news demo.

The CBS Evening News posted quarter-over-quarter declines in Q4 2017. The newscast was -7 percent in total viewers, and -14 percent in the key news demo versus Q4 2016.

The averages for Q4 2017:

  • Total Viewers: ABC: 8.910 M / NBC: 8.500 M / CBS: 6.584 M
  • A25-54 viewers: ABC: 1.836 M / NBC: 1.965 M / CBS: 1.376 M

World News Tonight capped off a strong quarter by winning the final week of 2017 in total viewers. WNT averaged nearly 9.4 million total viewers, +5 percent versus the week of Dec. 26, 2016, which also happened to be the first week of the 2017 Nielsen calendar. World News was -3 percent in the demo relative to that same week last year.

Nightly News finished No. 1 among adults 25-54 this past, giving the newscast 80 consecutive weekly victories in this key demographic. Compared to the same week last year, Nightly was -6 percent in the demo, and -1 percent in total viewers.

The CBS Evening News With Jeff Glor was the sole evening newscast to post year-over-year growth this past week, +3 percent in total viewers. The newscast was flat among adults 25-54.

The averages for the week of Dec. 25, 2017:

  • Total Viewers: ABC: 9.371 M / NBC: 8.719 M / CBS: 6.854 M
  • A25-54 viewers: ABC: 1.896 M / NBC: 2.001 M / CBS: 1.475 M