Cable News Ratings for Third Quarter 2013: No Surprises

Fox News takes the number one slot in total day and primetime; MSNBC and CNN trade two and three


The third quarter cable news ratings were released on Tuesday, with Fox News dominating in total day and primetime as well as the key 25-54 demographic and MSNBC and CNN vying for second place.

Fox News had an average 1,024,000 total viewers in total day and 1,609,000 in primetime, with 207,000 and 279,000 of those viewers in the 25-54 demo, respectively.

Also read: Elisabeth Hasselbeck’s Debut Week Gives ‘Fox & Friends’ Ratings Boost

CNN was number two in total day and number three in primetime, with 422,000 and 542,000 viewers in each. Adults 25-54 made up 136,000 of those viewers in total day and 179,000 in primetime.

MSNBC finished in third place in total day with 374,000 viewers but number two in primetime with 568,000. Adults 25-54 were 130,000 in total day and 190,000 in primetime.

Also read: Cable Ratings: CNN, HLN Grow in 2nd Quarter While Fox News Dominates

All networks experienced double-digit declines to some extent compared to third quarter 2012, though much of that was due to the run-up to the presidential election last year. Though CNN was down in primetime, it actually improved in its total day numbers.

HLN came in fourth place in both total day and primetime but posted big gains across the board compared to last year: up 20 and 17 percent in total viewers for total day and primetime, respectively, and 15 and 24 percent in the 25-54 demo. It also had the highest percentage of 25-54 viewers to total viewers in both categories — nearly 40 percent.