Fox News Is Now the Most-Watched Basic Cable Network in Total Day for 28 Straight Weeks

By A.J. Katz Comment

Lifted by extensive coverage of President Trump’s meeting with Vladimir Putin in Finland last Monday, Fox News was able to achieve the distinction of being the most-watched basic cable network in total day for the 28th consecutive week. That’s according to Nielsen live-plus-same-day data.

In total day, FNC averaged 1.4 million in total viewers, +12 percent from the same week in 2017.  Fox News was also the most-watched basic cable network in prime time, averaging nearly 2.5 million in the daypart last week, +27 percent vs. the comparable week in 2017.

FNC claimed 17 of the top 30 cable telecasts overall in total viewers, including presentations of Hannity, Tucker Carlson Tonight, The Ingraham Angle, The Five, The Story with Martha MacCallum, Special Report with Bret Baier, Outnumbered, Justice with Judge Jeanine Pirro and America’s Newsroom. Additionally, Hannity occupied four of the top 11 cable telecasts in total viewers for the week. The network’s coverage of the Helsinki summit bested the competition, with Hannity’s July 16th program as the No. 2 overall cable broadcast with 4 million total viewers. Hannity also had the first post-summit chat with Trump. Lastly, Bill Hemmer’s coverage for America’s Newsroom averaged nearly 2.4 million total viewers from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. outpacing NBC in the 9 a.m. ET hour and beating CBS, ABC and NBC during the 11 a.m. ET hour.

MSNBC was the second-most-watched basic cable network last week, both across the 24-hour total day and in prime time. The network’s 1.96 million total viewer average last week in prime time is +6 percent vs. the same week in 2017. The 1.1 million viewer average across the 24-hour day is +14 percent from last year.

CNN had a very solid week as well. It ranked No. 5 in total day viewers across basic cable last week, with 771,000. That’s +13 percent growth vs. the same week last year. CNN earned a top 10 finish in prime time, coming in at No. 9 this past week with a 1.1 million total viewer average. That’s +16 percent vs. the same week last year.

CNN beat MSNBC in the key A25-54 across the 24-hour day (6 a.m. – 6 a.m.), but MSNBC beat CNN in the demo during prime time.

Basic Cable Top 10 – Prime time (Total Viewers)

  1. Fox News (2,446,000)
  2. MSNBC (1,955,000)
  3. USA (1,356,000)
  4. HGTV (1,298,000)
  5. ESPN (1,279,000)

Basic Cable Top 10 – Total Day (Total Viewers)

  1. Fox News (1,371,000)
  2. MSNBC (1,092,000)
  3. Nickelodeon (987,000)
  4. Hallmark Channel (782,000)
  5. CNN (771,000)

Here’s how Fox Business Network performed last week. You’ll see better-than-normal finishes in the A25-54 demo due to the network’s extensive coverage of the summit.

Business Day (9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. ET)

  • FBN: 213,000 total viewers / 24,000 A25-54
  • CNBC: 137,000 total viewers / 20,000 A25-54

Market Hours (9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. ET)

  • FBN:  217,000 total viewers / 24,000 A25-54
  • CNBC: 140,000 total viewers / 21,000 A25-54

Total Day (6 a.m.-6 a.m. ET)

  • FBN: 150,000 total viewers / 19,000 A25-54
  • CNBC: 129,000 total viewers / 34,000 A25-54

Business Programs Ranker (Total Viewers)

  1. Lou Dobbs Tonight (326,000)
  2. Varney & Co. (261,000)
  3. Countdown to the Closing Bell with Liz Claman (210,000)
  4. After the Bell (188,000)
  5. The Intelligence Report with Trish Regan (180,000)
  6. Cavuto Coast to Coast (178,000)
  7. The Evening Edit with Elizabeth MacDonald (164,000)

Basic Cable Ranker: Week of July 16 (Total Viewers)

Basic Cable Ranker: Week of July 16 (A25-54)