New season, familiar trend: In the evenings, ABC is No. 1 in total viewers, while NBC captures the advertiser-friendly demos.
World News Tonight with David Muir opened the 2018-19 season by averaging 8.23 million total viewers for the week of Sept. 24, per Nielsen live-plus-same-day data. That number is less than +1 percent vs. the comparable week in 2017.
The ABC evening newscast led NBC by +596,000 to win premiere week for the 3rd straight year, and has ranked No. 1 in evening news among total viewers for 33 straight weeks.
The downside: ABC World News audience may be improving in total viewers, but it continues to lose younger viewers on an annual basis. The broadcast was -9 percent in A25-54 this past week vs. the same week last year.
NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt began the new season having scored the highest A25-54 advantage over its competition in seven months. That said, the newscast was -4 percent in A 25-54, and -3 percent in total viewers vs. last year.
Last Thursday, Nightly News was the sole evening newscast to air nationally following the testimonies of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford and Judge Brett Kavanaugh before the Senate Judiciary Committee.
CBS Evening News with Jeff Glor was -7 percent in total viewers, but up +26 percent in adults 25-54 vs. the same week in 2017. (Due to NFL Thursday Night Football, on Thursday Sept. 28, 2017, CBS Evening News was retitled and was excluded from the weekly averages.)
Editor’s note: On Thursday (9/27/18), “World News Tonight” and “Evening News” did not air due to the Judicial Senate Hearing. In addition, “Nightly News” aired only from 6:47-7:00 p.m. ABC’s and CBS’ averages are based on 4 days (Mon-Wed and Fri).
Week of Sept. 24, 2018:
|• Total Viewers:||8,230,000||7,634,000||5,649,000|
Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54 Live + SD weeks of 9/24/18, and 9/25/17. Averages based on regular telecasts.