Week of Sept. 25 Evening News Ratings: ABC World News Tonight Remains No. 1 Amid Audience Dropoff

By A.J. Katz 

During the week of September 25, 2023, ABC, NBC and CBS’ evening newscasts all lost viewers from both the previous and year-ago weeks. Nevertheless, ABC World News Tonight with David Muir delivered yet another weekly win for the network.

ABC’s Nielsen ratings juggernaut averaged 7.44 million total viewers and 1.055 million A25-54 viewers for Tuesday through Friday of last week (the Monday, Sept. 25 broadcast was not Nielsen-rated/excluded due to Monday Night Football airing on ABC stations in several markets west of the Mississippi).

According to live plus same day data from Nielsen, World News Tonight’s 7.44 million average is -1% from what the newscast averaged the previous week, and its 1.055 million A25-54 viewer average is -7% from the previous week. When compared against the same week in 2022 (which featured live, in-depth coverage of Hurricane Ian), World News Tonight is -13% in total viewers and a whopping -28% in A25-54 viewers, as ABC’s evening newscast continues its trend of losing viewers under 55 on an annual basis.


Despite last week’s audience losses, World News Tonight was still the most-watched program during season premiere on all of broadcast and cable TV (excluding sports) for the second year in a row, and has now defeated its evening competition from NBC and CBS 252 of the past 253 weeks in average total viewers—and 181 of the last 183 weeks among Adults 25-54.

Elsewhere on broadcast news, NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt was the fifth most-watched show across broadcast and cable TV (excluding sports), averaging more than 6.21 million total viewers and 698,000 A25-54 viewers for the week of Sept. 25. That’s -0.2% in total viewers and -8% in A25-54 viewers from what the newscast averaged the week prior. Nightly News shed -12% in total viewers and -20% in A25-54 viewers from the year-ago week.

Additionally, 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 929,400 views and 720,000 viewers last week

Changing channels, The CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell averaged 4.45 million total viewers and 623,000 Adults 25-54 for the week of Sept. 25. That’s down by only -0.2% in total viewers, but -7% in A25-54 viewers from the previous week. CBS Evening News shed -11% in total viewers and -24% in A25-54 viewers from the year-ago week.

Nielsen live-plus-same-day averages for the week of Sept. 25, 2023:

• Total Viewers: 7,441,000 6,213,000 4,448,000
• A25-54: 1,055,000 968,000 623,000




Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54; Live + SD Current Week (w/o 9/25/23), Previous Week (w/o 9/18/23) and Year-Ago Week (w/o 9/19/22). 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.