Week of Feb. 14 Evening News Ratings: For First Time, World News Tonight Is No. 1 During Both Weeks of an NBC Olympics

By A.J. Katz 

According to live-plus-same-day data from Nielsen, ABC World News Tonight with David Muir finished the week of Feb. 14, 2022 as the No. 1 evening newscast, both in total viewers (8.73 million) and among adults 25-54 (nearly 1.6 million).

America’s top evening newscast (and the most-watched regularly-scheduled show for the week) gained +3% in total viewers and +3% in adults 25-54 from the prior week (Feb. 7). Compared with the same week in 2021 (Feb. 15), the trend was worse, with World News Tonight losing -14% in average total audience and -22% among adults 25-54. The year-ago week featured breaking news on several fronts, including extreme winter weather in the South and across the Northeast. As a result, more Americans flocked to the evening newscasts that week than usual.

Nevertheless, ABC’s evening newscast has now defeated its competition from NBC and CBS 168 of the past 169 weeks in average total viewers—and 97 of the last 99 weeks among adults 25-54.


Taking last week’s results into account, World News Tonight has defeated NBC Nightly News during both weeks of an Olympics in both total viewers—and among adults 25-54 for the first time since at least 1992 Barcelona (Nielsen database debuted in Sept. 1991).

Nightly News with Lester Holt averaged just under 7 million total viewers (the second-largest audience of any regularly-scheduled show) and 1.32 million adults 25-54 during the week of Feb. 14. The evening newscast gained a solid +4% in total viewers and +5% among adults 25-54 from the prior week. Compared to the same week in 2021, however, the newscast lost -16% in total viewers and -19% in adults 25-54.

It’s worth noting that NBC’s primetime coverage of the 2022 Winter Olympics rated poorly. This hurts Nightly News’ ratings. It’s also worth noting that Nightly has been airing up to three hours earlier than its regular start time in both the mountain and pacific time zones, which doesn’t exactly stop the ratings issues either.

Additionally, on YouTube, full weekday episodes of NBC Nightly News averaged 624,000 views and roughly 500,000 viewers this past week. That’s according to data from Adobe Analytics and Partner Portals; YouTube Analytics Portal.

The CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell averaged 5.28 million total viewers and 870,000 adults 25-54 for the week of Feb. 14. The newscast +3% in total viewers and +6% among adults 25-54. The year-over-year trend was worse, however, with Evening News losing -17% in average total viewers and -26% among adults 25-54.

Nielsen live-plus-same-day averages for the week of Feb. 14, 2022:

• Total Viewers: 8,728,000 6,995,000 5,284,000
• A25-54: 1,595,000 1,323,000 870,000




Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54. Live + SD Current Week (w/o 2/14/22), Previous Week (w/o 2/7/22) and Year-Ago Week (w/o 2/15/21). Most Current: 2021-2022 Season (9/20/21 – 2/20/22) and 2020-2021 Season (9/21/20 – 2/21/21). Nielsen ratings for ABC, NBC and CBS include additional airings in select markets. Beginning 8/31/20, national ratings also include Out of Home (OOH) viewing. Averages based on regular telecasts.