Fox News Marks 11 Weeks at the Top in Total Day

By A.J. Katz 

March has been pure madness on multiple fronts, but Fox News is standing firm as the most-watched basic cable network in total day for the 11th consecutive week.

Additionally, Fox News finished No. 2 in total prime time cable viewers, and made up eight of the top 30 cable telecasts in total viewers with presentations of Hannity and Tucker Carlson Tonight accounting for six of the top 25 telecasts in all of cable. FNC also defeated its cable news competition in the key categories, including the ad-friendly A25-54 demographic.

TBS dominated the basic cable competition in prime time this past week, and moved into first place across all relevant categories thanks to its NCAA Tournament coverage.

But Fox was -10 percent in prime time viewers from the comparable week in 2017, which also featured March Madness action.

MSNBC finished No. 3 in total prime time viewers this past week, finishing only behind TBS and Fox News and posting +14 percent total viewer growth versus last year. The network ranked No. 2 across basic cable in total viewers (+28 percent year-over-year), and also defeated CNN both in the prime time demo.

CNN had a strong week in its own right. Not only did the network post year-over-year audience growth in multiple dayparts, including +12 percent total prime time viewer growth, but it also finished the week No. 5 in total day viewers across basic cable. CNN also defeated MSNBC in the total day demo.

Here are the top 5 basic cable networks for the week of March 19:

Basic Cable Top 5 – Prime time (P2+)

  1. TBS (3,134,000)
  2. Fox News (2,293,000)
  3. MSNBC (2,020,000)
  4. HGTV (1,509,000)
  5. USA (1,429,000)

Basic Cable Top 5 – Prime time (A25-54)

  1. TBS (1,428,000)
  2. USA (640,000)
  3. AMC (517,000)
  4. HGTV (504,000)
  5. TNT (470,000)

Basic Cable Top 5 – Total Day (P2+)

  1. Fox News (1,361,000)
  2. MSNBC (1,126,000)
  3. Nickelodeon (962,000)
  4. TBS (940,000)
  5. CNN (821,000)

Basic Cable Top 5 – Total Day (A25-54)

  1. TBS (462,000)
  2. Investigation Discovery (329,000)
  3. HGTV (280,000)
  4. USA (279,000)
  5. Fox News (272,000)

Over on the Fox Business side of things, Lou Dobbs Tonight continued its reign as the most-watched program in business news, delivering 316,000 total viewers. Risk & Reward and Making Money also won their respective hours in total viewers.

Marking 44 consecutive weeks as the most-watched market program on television, Varney & Co once again won its hour, and Cavuto Coast to Coast anchored by Neil Cavuto also ranked in the top three most-watch business programs for the week, averaging 214,000 total viewers.

Business Day:

FBN: 224,000 total viewers / 29,000 A25-54

CNBC: 197,000 total viewers / 34,000 A25-54

Market Hours:

FBN: 232,000 total viewers / 31,000 A25-54

CNBC: 200,000 total viewers / 36,000 A25-54


Finally, the duo of basic cable network rankers, sorted by total viewers and adults 25-54, respectively:

Basic Cable Ranker: Week of March 19 (Total Viewers)

Basic Cable Ranker: Week of March 19 (Adults 25-54)