Week of Nov. 20 Morning Show Ratings: Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade Lifts NBC’s Today to Weekly Win

By Mark Mwachiro 

Live coverage of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade on Thursday, November 23 provided NBC News’ Today show with a significant ratings lift –making it the most-watched morning show for the week of Nov. 20.

The last time Today edged ABC News’ Good Morning America in average total viewers was the week of Nov. 21, 2022, exactly a year ago, as once again, its coverage of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade provided a substantial lift.

NBC’s morning show win, however, comes with a significant caveat due to the Thanksgiving holiday; retitled and specialed telecasts of GMA, Today, and CBS Mornings are excluded from this week’s averages.


GMA was retitled to “GMA-ABC” on Wednesday and coded as a special on Thursday and Friday. NBC’s Today was coded as specials on Wednesday and Friday, and CBS Mornings was coded as specials on Wednesday through Friday.

This means that GMA and CBS Mornings’ weekly Nielsen ratings averages are based on just two days (Monday-Tuesday), while Today’s averages are based on three days (Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday – a sneaky add as this was the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade telecast).

According to live-plus-same-day data from Nielsen, GMA averaged 3.1 million total viewers and 642,000 viewers in the A25-54 demo for the week of Nov. 20. GMA’s performance when compared to the previous week was flat in total viewers but was up by +6% in the A25-54 demo. Looking at the morning show’s performance to the same week in 2022, GMA was down in total viewers by -5% and a drop of -10% in the A25-54 demo.

Meanwhile, Today took top honors for the week of Nov. 20 in total viewers and the A25-54 demo with 3.31 million and 674,000, respectively. Looking at the show’s numbers from the previous week, Today had double-digit growth (again attributed to Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade coverage), up in both total viewers and A25-54 demo, by +20% and +23%, respectively. Compared to the same week in 2022, Today’s total viewers and A25-54 numbers decreased by -9% and -17%, respectively.

CBS Mornings was in third place with an average of 2.36 million total viewers and 447,000 A25-54 viewers for the week of Nov. 20. Compared to the previous week, CBS Mornings was up in total viewers by +5% and was flat in the A25-54 demo. Looking at the same period in 2022, CBS Mornings dropped in total viewers and in A25-54 by -7% and -12%, respectively.

Nielsen live-plus-same-day numbers for the week of Nov. 20, 2023:

• Total Viewers: 3,097,000 3,310,000   2,358,000
• A25-54: 642,000 830,000 447,000




Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54 and Adults 18-49 Live + SD Current Week (w/o 11/20/23), Previous Week (w/o 11/13/23) and Year-Ago Week (w/o 11/14/22). Most Current Data Stream: 2022-2023 Season (9/25 – 11/26/22) and 2022-2023 Season (9/19 – 11/20/22). Beginning 8/31/20, national ratings also include Out of Home (OOH) viewing. Averages based on regular telecasts.