In a new TV ratings report published Wednesday by Nielsen Media Research, Fox News Channel continues to reign supreme in the cable news wars, while CNN’s primetime audience has collapsed by a shocking 25%.
” Fox News extended its run of consecutive months at number one to a staggering 197, while building hitting another impressive milestone: Fox News has now beaten every other network in basic cable for 23 months straight, based on total day ratings, with an average total day audience in May of 1.4 million viewers,” said Forbes.
“In prime time, Fox News destroyed its competition, with an average total audience of 2.381 million viewers, compared to MSNBC’s 1.384 million and CNN’s 835,000. Among viewers 25-54, the group most coveted by advertisers, Fox News shook off a challenge in recent months from MSNBC to claim a clear victory: 461,000 viewers, well ahead of MSNBC (329,000) and CNN (265,000).”
Nielsen reported that Fox News secured an impressive ten of the top fifteen shows in all of the cable news, with Fox News’ Sean Hannity finishing in the top most-watched cable news show in May. Aside from ESPN and the NBA playoffs, Hannity had more viewers than any other show on cable.
In total viewers, “Hannity” had 3.261 million, followed by MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show” (2.627 million), and Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight” (2.617 million), “The Ingraham Angle” (2.617 million) and “The Five” (2.153 million).
On a year-over-year basis, Fox News viewership increased +6 percent to 2.381 million viewers during primetime. MSNBC declined -2 percent to 1.654 million viewers, and CNN collapsed -25 percent in viewers to 888,000.
Regarding demographics, the prime working age American (25- to 54-year-old) coveted by corporations for advertising purposes, Hannity gained the top spot with 650,000 of these viewers. A handful of companies late last year dropped their advertisement programs with Hannity over the Roy Moore interview. Reflecting on that decisions, well, it seems like those companies made a terrible advertising mistake. Maddow secured second, with 513,000 prime age working Americans, while Laura Ingraham finished in the third slot, with 523,000.
When it comes to financial news, most Americans have now gravitated to Fox Business for their daily dose of mainstream economics. Fox has been leading the financial segment of news for twelve consecutive months in a row over its rival CNBC. “Lou Dobbs Tonight” has been a grand slam for the network — now ranked most-watched cable business program, with 319,000 total viewers. “Varney & Co.” with Stuart Varney placing second, with 232,000, and “Countdown to the Closing Bell with Liz Claman” was third, with 178,000.
Wrapping up the top five were “After the Bell” on Fox Business, with 176,000 viewers, and CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street/Squawk Alley,” with 172,000. Mad Money with Jim Cramer was nowhere to be found.
In total views during market hours of 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Fox Business had an average of 187,000 viewers to CNBC’s 165,000. However, CNBC did surpass Fox Business in the total views for the prime working age cohort, but not by much - possibly due to CNBC’s crypto trader segment.
Americans who get their daily dose of news, politics, and economics from mainstream news outlets appear to have received the message blasted by President Donald Trump that "liberal media" is fake news, and nowhere is it more obvious than in the ratings collapse of Trump's nemesis: CNN. Which begs the question: is the Fourth Estate indeed collapsing as many believe, or is it just shifting increasingly to conservative media?