Evening News Ratings: Week of Nov. 18

By A.J. Katz 

ABC World News Tonight with David Muir continues to finish at the top of the heap in the evening news ratings race.

For the week of Nov. 18, 2019, based on live-plus-same-day data from Nielsen, World News Tonight outperformed NBC Nightly News by an average of +882,000 total viewers, +46,000 Adults 25-54.

Season to date, World News Tonight ranks No. 1 in average total audience at this point of the season for the 4th consecutive year. In fact, the ABC flagship newscast is more than doubling its lead over its NBC competition from last season (+175% – 764,000 vs. 278,000) to its largest season lead in 24 years—since the 1995-1996 season.


NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt remained in second place among adults 25-54 and total viewers, both for the week and for the month.

In November, Nightly News featured the remaining Democratic presidential candidates talking about their solutions to issues that matter most to voters in a news series, What Matters.  And this past week, the newscast featured Cynthia McFadden’s nearly year-long exclusive investigative report revealing an underground army of child laborers mining mica, a mineral that ends up in products used by millions of Americans.

Three consecutive weeks of record-audiences for the CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell came to an end this past week. The newscast failed to hit the 6 million total viewer mark for the week of Nov. 18.

Compared to the same week last year, ABC was -1% in total viewers, and -5% in the key A25-54 demo. The year-over-year drop off for NBC and CBS was far more significant. NBC was -14% in total viewers and -12% among adults 25-54. CBS was -13% in total viewers, and -17% among adults 25-54 from last year.

Average audience for the week of Nov. 18 2019:

• Total Viewers: 8,797,000 7,915,000 5,608,000
• A25-54: 1,708,000 1,662,000 1,102,000



Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54. Live + SD Current Week (w/o 11/18/19), and Year-Ago Week (w/o 11/19/18). Most Current: 2019–2020 Season (9/23 – 11/24/19) and 2018–2019 Season (9/24 – 11/25/18). Nielsen ratings for ABC, NBC and CBS include additional airings in select markets. Averages based on regular telecasts.

Here is additional Nielsen data we received for the month of November, which still shows World News at No. 1 in the key categories.

Program P25-54
Imps (000)
Impressions (000)
NBC NIGHTLY NEWS 1,731,000 8,094,000
CBS EVENING NEWS 1,122,000 5,746,000
ABC WORLD NEWS TONIGHT 1,739,000 8,880,000

Note: Nightly News, World News Tonight and CBS Evening News’ ratings are comprised of telecasts with regular titling and include overnight airings on owned stations. World News Tonight’s ratings also include 3:30 p.m. airings in Los Angeles and San Francisco.