July 2013 Ratings: Fox News Down Despite Big News Month

By Alex Weprin 

Fox News Channel was down in both total viewers and adults 25-54 in primetime in July, and was flat in total viewers and down in the demo in total day. This was despite a very big news month, led by near non-stop coverage of the George Zimmerman trial, the Asiana plane crash, the Royal baby and the military coup in Egypt. FNC remained the top cable news channel in both primetime and total day (139 months at the top), though it did cede some dayside hours to CNN in the demo.

The ratings for July 2013, (Nielsen Live + Same Day data):

  • Primetime (Mon-Sun): 1,665,000 Total Viewers / 294,000 A25-54
  • Total Day Mon-Sun): 1,065,000 Total Viewers / 215,000 A25-54

Compared to July, 2012, FNC was down -3% in total viewers in primetime and -10% in A25-54. In total day FNC was flat in total viewers, and down -14% in A25-54.

During dayside coverage, which saw a substantial amount of live coverage of the Zimmerman trial, FNC was up slightly in total viewers from 3-6 PM.  Aside from those mid-afternoon gains in total viewers, FNC was down nearly every hour. The biggest drops came at 6 PM in the demo, with “Special Report” down -34% and the 10 AM “America’s Newsroom,” which was down -14% in total viewers.

In primetime, “The O’Reilly Factor” was flat in total viewers, but fell -20% in the demo, while “Hannity” was down  -13% in total viewers and -19% in the demo and “On the Record” was down -16% in total viewers and -19% in the demo.

In the morning, “Fox & Friends” was down -1% in total viewers and -22% in the demo, that show’s lowest demo performance since 2008. “Fox & Friends” is adding former “The View” panelist Elisabeth Hasselbeck later this year to shake things up on the morning program, though the program still holds a strong lead in both total and demo viewers compared to its cable news competition.