Q4 Morning Show Ratings: GMA and Today Continue to Split Key Categories, But Post Year-Over-Year Losses

By A.J. Katz 

Good Morning America and Today show split the morning show ratings race for Q4 of 2020.

All three – GMA, Today and CBS This Morning – lost viewers from Q4 of the previous year, continuing an unfortunate trend of year-over-year ratings losses for the morning shows as of late.

Based on the most current data from Nielsen, GMA was the most-watched morning show in Q4 for the 9th consecutive years, averaging 3.5 million total viewers for the quarter. Overall, GMA has won 32 of the last 34 quarters in total viewers, finishing behind Today show in Q3 2016 and Q1 2018, both of which featured NBC Olympics.


The ABC morning show outperformed its NBC competition by +147,000 total viewers, nearly doubling its total viewers advantage versus the prior Q4 (+87%; vs. 79,000) to its largest 4th quarter lead since 2015.

NBC’s Today, however, was yet again the top national morning show for Q4 among adults 25-54, the demo that still means the most to TV news advertisers. The broadcast marked 21 straight quarters at No. 1 in the demo, averaging slightly more than 1 million total viewers in Q4, or roughly +10% more than GMA and +68% more than CBS This Morning.

CBS This Morning remained No. 3 in Q4 2020, averaging 2.74 million total viewers. CTM lost viewers from the prior Q4, but its year-over-year losses in total viewership were less severe than those of ABC and NBC.

In Q4 2020, compared with Q4 of 2019, GMA was -9% in total viewers and -17% in A25-54 viewers. Today was -11% in total viewers and -15% in A25-54 viewers. CBS This Morning was -5% in total viewers, but -18% in A25-54 viewers.

An average of 9.6 million Americans watched the national morning shows in Q4 2020, a -8% change from Q4 2019 (10.5 million).

The averages for Q4, 2020:

• Total Viewers: 3,528,000 3,380,000 2,740,000
• A25-54: 944,000 1,042,000 622,000