Week of April 6 Evening News Ratings: World News Tonight Has Been the Most-Watched Show in America for 5 of the Past 6 Weeks

By A.J. Katz Comment

ABC World News Tonight with David Muir was the No. 1 evening newscast last week, putting up huge numbers in Total Viewers and the A25-54 demo.

Not only was World News Tonight the top-rated evening newscast last week, but it was the most-watched show on all of television, according to Nielsen live-plus-same-day data, averaging 11.36 million total viewers.

The newscast also averaged 2.47 million adults 25-54 during the week of April 6.

World News Tonight WNT has been America’s most-watched TV show for 5 of the past 5 weeks. It has also been the most-watched evening newscast all 29 weeks of the season and the last 72 weeks overall, and is seeing its most-watched season in 15 years—since the 2004-05 season.

The NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt took second place across the board for the second consecutive week. That’s nothing to be down about, because Nightly News was still the second-most-watched program in America for the week of April 6 (excluding syndication) with 9.93 million total viewers. The broadcast also averaged 2.32 million A25-54 viewers.

NBC presented an additional 7:30 p.m. ET repeat airing of Nightly News in a number of markets.

Despite finishing behind ABC and NBC each day last week, the CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell ranked among the three-most-watched CBS shows for the week. In fact, on April 9, CBS Evening News was the network’s most-watched broadcast on the network.

CBS Evening News’ ratings are comprised of telecasts with regular titling and include overnight airings on owned stations.

Including the new 4 a.m. airing, CBS says its evening newscast brought in a gross audience of 7.44 million total viewers and 1.57 million total viewers last week. Nielsen does not take that airing into account in its reporting.

How did the evening newscasts perform relative to prior weeks?

According to live-plus-same day data from Nielsen, ompared to the same week in 2019, World News Tonight was +72% in Total Viewers and +103% in the key A25-54 demo. Nightly News was +42% in Total Viewers and +63% in the key demo. Evening News was +31% in Total Viewers and +37% in the key demo.

A great trend, though that’s really really surprising if one considers the breaking news-heavy era we’re in.

However, compared with the prior week, which might be a more relevant comparison considering the unique circumstances we find ourselves in, the trend was poor.

World News Tonight was -17% in Total Viewers and -21% in the A25-54 demo. Nightly News was -6% in Total Viewers and -11% in the key demo. Evening News was -6% in Total Viewers and -7% in the demo.

Numbers for the week of April 6, 2020:

ABC NBC CBS
• Total Viewers: 11,357,000 9,933,000 *6,903,000
• A25-54: 2,469,000 2,318,000 1,419,000

 

 

 

Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54 Live + SD Current Week (w/o 4/6/20), Previous Week (w/o 3/30/20) and Year-Ago Week (w/o 4/8/19).

Most Current: 2019-2020 Season (9/23/19-4/12/20) and 2018-2019 Season (9/24/18-4/14/19). 

Nielsen ratings for ABC, NBC and CBS include additional airings in select markets. Averages based on regular telecasts.  Broadcast and Cable ranker for w/o 4/6/20 based on Total Day.

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