Week of Nov. 28 Basic Cable Ranker: Fox News Continues Its Reign Atop Cable News Landscape

By A.J. Katz 

With Nielsen live plus same day data for the week of November 28 now in, we can confidently report Fox News Channel has now achieved 48 consecutive weeks as the most-watched basic cable network in the 24-hour daypart (according to Nielsen live-plus-same-day data), and a whopping 94 consecutive weeks as the most-watched network on cable news.

FNC averaged 1.33 million viewers and 171,000 adults 25-54 in total day during the post-Thanksgiving week, -11% and -30%, respectively, from what it averaged in those two categories during the same week in 2021 (Nov. 29, 2021). Fox’s 171,000 A25-54 viewer count places it at No. 2 on basic cable behind ESPN (358,000). Additionally, Fox News averaged 1.96 million total viewers and 237,000 A25-54 viewers in primetime this past week, which is -21% and -37%, respectively, from the year-ago week. FNC’s 1.96 million viewer average places it at No. 2 among all basic cable networks in primetime (behind ESPN’s 2.36 million viewer average), while the 237,000 A25-54 viewer average is No. 9 among all basic cable networks in primetime.

Why the substantial year-over-year losses? Perhaps it was because the year-ago week featured live coverage and analysis of the Kyle Rittenhouse trial, an event which attracted more viewers to the network than usual.


CNN posted relatively low primetime ratings this past week, averaging just 556,000 total viewers and 133,000 adults 25-54. That’s -18% and -12%, respectively, versus the year-ago week.  Anderson Cooper was out for much of this past week (Monday-Wednesday) and CNN aired Original Series reruns in Saturday and Sunday primetime, which could explain these mediocre primetime ratings. The story in total day, however, wasn’t quite as poor, with the network averaging 495,000 total viewers and 101,000 A25-54 viewers in total day last week, -6% and -9%, respectively, from the year ago week. For the week of Nov. 28, CNN ranks No. 16 in total primetime viewers and No. 20 in the primetime demo, No. 5 in total day viewers and No. 14 in the total day demo.

MSNBC averaged 1.20 million total viewers and 120,000 A25-54 in primetime this past week. The 1.20 million figure is less than +1%, while the 120,000 figure is actually -14% from the year-ago week. This follows a trend of MSNBC’s average audience aging substantially on an annual basis. The trend in total day is strong for MSNBC. The network averaged 751,000 total viewers and 81,000 adults 25-54 in total day this past week, up +7% and +1% from the year-ago week. For the week of Nov. 28, MSNBC ranks No. 4 in total primetime viewers, No. 24 among the primetime demo, No. 3 in total day viewers and No. 21 among the total day demo.

Week of Nov. 28 cable news ratings, Monday-Sunday (Nielsen Live+SD data):

• Total Viewers: 1,957,000 1,204,000 556,000
• A25-54: 237,000 120,000 133,000




• Total Viewers: 1,331,000 751,000 495,000
• A25-54: 171,000 81,000 101,000




In terms of individual programming, The Five is the most-watched cable news show for the 15th consecutive week. The news talk panel program averaged 3.15 million total viewers during the week of Nov. 28. Tucker Carlson Tonight is second place in total viewers (more than 2.91 million at 8 p.m.), with Jesse Watters Primetime (2.57 million at 7 p.m.), Special Report with Bret Baier (2.41 million viewers at 6 p.m.) and Hannity (2.28 million at 9 p.m.) rounding out the top five.

Tucker Carlson Tonight took the top spot on cable news among adults 25-54, averaging 360,000 viewers from the measurement at 8 p.m. The Five ranks No. 2 followed by Gutfeld (312,000), Hannity (287,000) and Special Report (286,000).

Below are the basic cable network rankers for this past week. The first is sorted by most to fewest total viewers, and the second is sorted by most to fewest adults 25-54:

Week of Nov. 28 (Total Viewers)

Week of Nov. 28 (Adults 25-54)