Take A Look at the Minute-by-Minute Sunday Morning Ratings

By Chris Ariens 

CBS Sunday Morning with Jane Pauley continues its lead as the most-watched morning TV show, drawing more than 6 million viewers last Sunday.

That’s a hefty lead-in for the program that comes on afterwards, on most CBS stations that’s Face the Nation. Unfortunately, FTN has a hard time holding on to that audience, and in some markets, including New York and Washington, D.C. it goes head to head with NBC’s Meet the Press, its closest Sunday competitor.

Face the Nation edged Meet the Press last Sunday among total viewers, while MTP topped FTN in the demo. But take a look at this Nielsen minute-by-minute viewership graph of the Sunday shows. While NBC started more than 1.5 million viewers behind CBS, Meet the Press gained an average of 158,000 viewers over the first 49 minutes of the show. Face the Nation, by contrast, lost an average of 1.1 million viewers over 30 minutes. It’s also interesting to note how MTP has the most profound drops (and return viewers) when a commercial comes on. Last Sunday that was around minutes 19 and 28.


As the Trump administration takes office, the Sunday shows could be–and will all work to be–vital resources for D.C. news and analysis. But which one is poised to benefit most?