Week of Nov. 21 Evening News Ratings: Top-Ranked World News Tonight Posts Year-Over-Year Gains

By A.J. Katz 

Top-ranked ABC World News Tonight with David Muir held on to its No. 1 status during the Thanksgiving holiday-shortened week of November 21  — meaning it has now defeated its evening news competition from NBC and CBS 208 of the past 209 weeks in average total viewers—and 137 of the last 139 weeks among adults 25-54.

WNT also won the November sweep period for the third consecutive year, and was the only evening newscast to gain total viewers from Nov. 2021 sweep (+2%, 8.44 million vs. 8.29 million).

But back to weekly performance, World News Tonight averaged 8.735 million total linear viewers this past week, No. 3 on all of U.S. TV, excluding sports programming. That figure is -2% from what the newscast averaged the prior week (Nov. 14), which had been the newscast’s most-watched week since February (driven by Muir’s highly-rated Mike Pence interview). WNT also averaged more than 1.53 million viewers from the key demo this past week, which is +1% from the prior week and the newscast’s largest average audience in eight months. Additionally, versus the Thanksgiving holiday-shortened week in 2021 (week of Nov. 22), ABC’s evening newscast gained +4% in total viewers and +3% in adults 25-54. A nice result for the newscast.


ABC’s and CBS’ evening news ratings averages for the week of Nov. 21 are based on just two days (Monday and Tuesday), whereas NBC’s evening news ratings are based on three days (Monday, Tuesday and Friday) due to the Thanksgiving holiday. Each newscast was coded as a “special” on Wednesday and Thanksgiving Thursday. Those special broadcasts are excluded from the weekly and season averages. The same was true during Thanksgiving week 2021, with the main difference being NBC Nightly News was the most-watched evening newscast that week for the first time in three years.

While NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt was not the most-watched evening newscast during Thanksgiving week 2022, but it came quite close. The newscast hit a 52-week high in total viewers (8.33 million) and a 37-week high in A25-54 viewers (1.37 million), and delivered more week-to-week growth than the competition. The 8.33 million total is +15% from the prior week, and the 1.37 million adults 25-54 is +11% from the prior week, which means Nightly has seen its 3rd consecutive week of ratings growth from the prior week. That said, NBC’s evening newscast shed total viewers (-3%) and A25-54 viewers (-7%) from the year-ago week.

According to data from Adobe Analytics and Partner Portals—and the YouTube Analytics Portal, full weekday episodes of NBC Nightly News earned an average of 932,000 views and 702,000 viewers last week.

CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell averaged 5.22 million total viewers this past week, which is -2% from the previous week, and -2% from the year-ago week. The newscast averaged 817,000 adults 25-54 this past week, which is -2% from the previous week and -13% from the year-ago week.

Nielsen live-plus-same-day averages for the week of Nov. 21, 2022:

• Total Viewers: 8,735,000 8,330,000 5,222,000
• A25-54: 1,531,000 1,374,000 817,000




Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54, Live + SD Current Week (w/o 11/21/22), Previous Week (w/o 11/14/22) and Year-Ago Week (w/o 11/22/21). Most Current Data Stream: Season 2022-2023 (9/19 – 11/27/22), Season 2021-2022 (9/20 – 11/28/21). Sweeps based on Most Current: November 2022 Sweep (10/27 – 11/23/22), November 2021 Sweep (10/28 – 11/24/21) and July 2021 Sweep (6/30 – 7/27/21). Sweep periods (November, February, May and July). 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.