Evening News Ratings: Week of Sept. 9

By A.J. Katz 

Another split decision in the evening news ratings race, with ABC World News Tonight finishing the week of Sept. 9 as the most-watched of the big three, while NBC Nightly News top dog among adults 25-54.

Anchored by David Muir, World News averaged 8.1 million viewers last week, marking more total viewers than NBC and CBS for the 50th time in the 51 weeks of the season.

Season to date, ABC’s flagship newscast leads NBC’s flagship newscast by +661,000 total viewers, delivering its largest lead lead in 23 years (since the 1995-1996 season) and CBS Evening News (5.85 million) by +2.766 million, posting its biggest total viewer in at least 27 years.

Additionally, due the Democratic debate on Thursday (9/12/19), World News Tonight ratings averages are based on four days (Mon-Wed and Fri) this week.

World News kicked off the week (Monday, Sept. 9) with Muir’s exclusive reporting from Iraq with U.S. forces during an operation against ISIS fighters.

Nightly News with Lester Holt ranked No. 1 in the key A25-54 demo last week, and also delivered its largest advantage over World News Tonight in 35 weeks (+141,000 / +10%).

Nightly has been the No. 1 evening newscast among adults 25-54 for 12 consecutive seasons, and it appears to be on its way to another season win in that measurement.

Last week, Holt reported on the 25th anniversary of the 1994 Crime Bill, a Justice for All segment. This week, Nightly is presenting special reports on climate as part of NBC’s Climate in Crisis series.

CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell once again was able to exceed the 5 million total viewer mark, though it slipped more than its ABC and NBC counterparts (relative to last year).

All of the evening newscasts were significantly down versus the same week last year. World News Tonight was -8% in total viewers, and -18% in the key A25-54 demo. CBS Evening News was -17% in total viewers and -29% among adults 25-54. Nightly News was -6% in total viewers, and -18% among adults 25-54.

It’s worth remembering that evening newscasts provided in-depth, on-the-ground coverage of Hurricane Florence during the same week in 2018.

Average audience for the week of Sept. 9 2019:

• Total Viewers: 8,091,000 7,751,000 5,021,000
• A25-54: 1,468,000 1,609,000 916,000




Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54 Live + SD, 2018-19 Current Week (w/o 9/9/19), and Year-Ago Week (w/o 9/10/18). Most Current: 2018-2019 Season (9/24/18 – 9/15/19) and 2017-2018 Season (9/25/17 – 9/16/18).  Averages based on regular telecasts.