Week of March 9 Evening News Ratings: World News Tonight Is No. 1, and Nightly News Shows Year-Over-Year Growth

By A.J. Katz 

Ratings for the evening newscasts were strong this past week.

This isn’t a total surprise. Americans are projected to watch as much as 60% more television and movies at home now that increasingly strict coronavirus-related lockdowns and shutdowns are in place in cities around the country and more people are working from home, according to an analysis from Nielsen.

ABC World News Tonight with David Muir not only continued to finish No. 1 in the ratings race, but it also posted the most year-over-year of the big three.


On Thursday, March 12, WNT was the most-watched on all of TV for the week in Total Viewer. Further, all 5 of WNT broadcasts landed in the top 8 programs on all television for the week.

Despite finishing No. 2, Nightly News with Lester Holt delivered solid audience growth, and delivered its best performance in the key A25-54 demo  – in over a year (53 weeks).

he CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell remained in third place, but remains an important place for evening news consumption.

When compared with the same week in 2019, ABC was an impressive +15% in Total Viewers and +14% in the key A25-54 demo. NBC was +4% in Total Viewers and +9% in the key demo. CBS posted slight declines, however, -1% in Total Viewers and -2% in the demo vs. last year.

Anyways, below are the numbers for the week of Mar. 9, 2020:

• Total Viewers: 9,923,000 8,463,000 6,074,000
• A25-54: 2,089,000 1,933,000 1,185,000




Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54  Live + SD Current Week (w/o 3/9/20),  and Year-Ago Week (w/o 3/41119). Most Current: 2019-2020 Season (9/23/19-3/15/20) and 2018-2019 Season (9/24/18-3/17/19). 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 3/9/20 based on Total Day. World News Tonight’s ratings also include 3:30pm airings in Los Angeles and San Francisco.